Causes of eczema
The specific cause of eczema remains unknown, but it is believed to develop due to a combination of hereditary (genetic) and environmental factors.
Children are more likely to develop eczema if a parent has had it or another atopic disease. If both parents have an atopic disease, the chances increase further.
Environmental factors are also known to bring out the symptoms of eczema. These include:
- Irritants – soaps, detergents, shampoos, disinfectants, juices from fresh fruits, meats, or vegetables
- Allergens – dust mites, pets, pollens, mold,dandruff
- Microbes – bacteria such as Staphylococcus aureus,viruses, certain fungi
- Hot and cold temperatures – hot weather, high and low humidity, perspiration from exercise
- Foods – dairy products, eggs, nuts and seeds, soy products, wheat
- Stress- it is not a cause of eczema but can make symptoms worse
- Hormones – women can experience worsening of eczema symptoms at times when their hormone levels are changing, for example during pregnancy and at certain points in their menstrual cycle.
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