With any eczema treatment, whether prescribed, purchased over the counter or when using at-home remedies, the fact is that you are only treating the symptom of eczema. There is no cure for eczema, so the only true option you have is to treat the symptoms that could include dry cracked skin, blistering of the skin, redness, pain and inflammation of the skin. Antibiotics are often used in the treatment of eczema due to the high risk of infection.
Why Antibiotics Are Used
A flare up of eczema leads to cracks, blisters or openings in the skin (sores). These areas are prone to infection because bacteria and germs can easily get to these areas of the skin and cause an infection. The primary care physician or dermatologist will often start the patient on antibiotics whenever they experience a flare up of eczema. When the doctor does this, he is trying to build up immunities in the body to prevent an infection.
Getting an infection to the areas where the eczema is at can cause a major exacerbation of the skin condition and cause the area to get larger and harder to treat. The dermatologist will try to fight an infection before one even occurs, due to the difficulty of getting rid of the infected eczema and then also having to safely treat the now exacerbated areas of eczema.
What a Skin Infection Does
Once the skin is broken it becomes a portal for the simpliest of germs or bacteria to enter and weaken the patient's immunity. Once an infection of the skin occurs, it is very easy to infect other areas of eczema on the body as well as cause new flare ups of eczema. The more areas of the body with eczema, the harder it is to treat. When several areas of the body are infected, the patient's overall health is at risk, including an increased risk of tissue death around the infected areas and an increased chance of becoming septic.
At the first sign of an eczema flare up, you should call either your primary care physician or dermatologist. Each doctor is different, but most will want to start you on antibiotics right away. It is imperative that you do not pick at or scratch the eczema. By scratching the area you will cause irritation which will cause the affected area of your skin to become larger. Picking at the areas of eczema introduces germs and bacteria, and causes more breaks in the skin which will increase your chances of getting a skin infection. When you have an eczema flare up, the best eczema treatment is putting in place preventative measures such as taking antibiotics and protecting the skin from germs.