The following information is from the National Institute of Health website1.
What Causes Atopic Dermatitis?
The cause of atopic dermatitis is not known. It is likely caused by both genetic (runs in the family) and environmental factors. People with atopic dermatitis may go on to develop hay fever and asthma.
How Is Atopic Dermatitis Diagnosed?
Diagnosis is based on the symptoms. Each person has his or her own mix of symptoms that can change over time. Doctors will ask for a medical history to:
Learn about your symptoms
Know when symptoms occur
Rule out other diseases
Look for causes of symptoms.
Doctors also may ask about:
Other family members with allergies
Whether you have conditions such as hay fever or asthma
Whether you have been around something that might bother the skin
Foods that may lead to skin flares
Treatments you have had for other skin problems
Use of steroids or medicine.
There isn't a certain test that can be used to check for this disease. But you may be tested for allergies by a dermatologist (skin doctor) or allergist (allergy doctor).
Things That Make Atopic Dermatitis Worse
Irritants and allergens can make atopic dermatitis worse.
Irritants are things that may cause the skin to be red and itchy or to burn. They include:
Wool or manmade fibers
Soaps and cleaners
Some perfumes and makeup
Substances such as chlorine, mineral oil, or solvents
Dust or sand
Allergens are allergy-causing substances from foods, plants, animals, or the air. Common allergens are:
Eggs, peanuts, milk, fish, soy products, and wheat
Dog or cat dander
Stress, anger, and frustration can make atopic dermatitis worse, but they haven't been shown to cause it. Skin infections, temperature, and climate can also lead to skin flares. Other things that can lead to flares are:
The statements contained herein have not been evaluated by the FDA. The information provided is intended to help you better understand the different treatments for the symptoms of psoriasis, eczema and seborrheic dermatitis. We attempt to provide you with accurate and current information, but make no guarantees or representations to its accuracy or completeness. Always consult your physician or other health care provider concerning your health care related questions or before starting any new health care regime. Inclusion on this website of information from others or links to other websites does not constitute the endorsement by Ontos, Inc. of the content of such other sources, nor an endorsement by those entities of the products or representation of Ontos, Inc.