Eczema is often an inherited (genetic) condition due to a lack of a glue-like protein (called Filaggrin) which seals the skin epithelial cells together to form a barrier to the outside world. Eczema sufferers therefore have this poor barrier to the outside world, and anything that irritates the skin can penetrate deeper into their eczematous skin (such as chemicals, soaps, detergents, allergens, bacteria and viruses). The best advice is to help that barrier effect by applying regular emollients and moisturisers. Ointment based products are better than creams for improving the barrier effect. Cortisone cream will help the irritation, but emollients applied regularly is the treatment of choice.
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