Difference between Psoriasis and Atopic Dermatitis

Medical terminology can be greatly confusing. You might think that all skin rashes are alike but that could not be further from the truth. Two skin disorders that are often confused with one another are psoriasis and atopic dermatitis. They do have some common similarities but two different things cause them and the psoriasis medication and treatment is different from those for dermatitis. Dermatitis is actually caused by something outside the body producing an allergy. Psoriasis on the other hand is a skin disease that has unknown origins although it is thought to have its roots in the body’s immune system.

Atopic dermatitis or skin eczema is a condition that produces red skin rashes, which are non-contagious. It is generally caused by allergies to certain outside stimuli. A great example of someone suffering from skin eczema is when hay fever or allergies, such as being allergic to a certain brand of washing detergent, occur. The area of skin affected becomes red, itchy and very painful to the touch. This skin disease is hereditary. If your parents have atopic eczema, then there is a high chance that you will have the same condition and allergy.

The best way to discover what you are allergic to, is to ask your doctor for an skin allergy test which will check for different allergens. The doctor will perform skin patch testing or scratch testing. He or she will apply an allergen to a specific area and wait to see if skin irritation occurs. If it does, then it means that you are allergic to that particular allergen. This process can take quite a while to produce definitive results, due to the sheer volume of potential allergens that we are exposed to every day.

There are things you can do to reduce the symptoms of atopic dermatitis.

You can watch what you eat and avoid any allergens that irritate the body. You can also treat the infected areas with a topical cream designed to help keep the area moisturized, while clearing up the outbreak. The creams usually contain a steroid to help the body heal faster. There is also the option of ultraviolet therapy but that is given after creams have proven ineffective.

This skin disease does not have to mean the end of the world. There is help and with the proper diagnosis, you can live a quality life.