Eczema – what are the causes?

The causes of eczema are difficult to determine. Genetic and environmental factors are probably at the root of the predisposition to the development of diseases in this group. One of the hypotheses assumes that the development of eczema occurs in a similar way to the development of allergies. The so-called “hygiene hypothesis” suggests that allergic diseases (including eczema) are caused by insufficient exposure to antigens of infectious microbes during early childhood. The cellular immune mechanisms of children remaining in too sterile conditions from activity directed against pathogens “switch” to increased mechanisms of hypersensitivity

Another possible cause of the development of pimples is the deficiency of certain nutrients, such as fatty acids, zinc and biotin. Genetic factors also play a role in the development of eczema. An example of genetic conditions affecting the condition of the skin are disorders within the gene encoding filaggrin, which lead to abnormal structure of the epidermis. As a result of this abnormality, there is excessive water loss through the skin and increased permeability to various types of pathogens and allergens. This mechanism is particularly important in the pathogenesis of atopic dermatitis. The influence of genetic factors on the formation of the disease is significant – the risk of developing AD in a child whose parents suffer from this disease is up to 70%.

The increased severity of AD-related symptoms may be influenced by many variable factors. They include e.g. exposure to various types of allergens (not only contact haptens), too dry air, the use of irritating hygiene products, tight clothes and many others.

In allergic contact eczema, the most common substances that trigger a skin reaction are:

Peru balsam,
Other cosmetic ingredients.

Non-allergic contact eczema is caused by excessive damage to the lipid layer that protects the skin. The greatest risk of developing this type of eczema occurs during contact with substances that specifically damage this protective layer of the skin. These include laundry detergents, various types of washing liquids, strongly alkaline substances and other chemicals.

Author: Emily Johnson
Emily Johnson is a passionate advocate for healthy living and skin wellness. Through her work, Emily aims to empower individuals to take control of their skin health and lead happier, eczema-free lives.