Eczema (Dermatitis). Eczema is a condition of an inflammation of the skin where patches of skin become inflamed, itchy, red, blistered, dry, cracked, and rough. The most common form of eczema is atopic eczema (atopic dermatitis). Atopic eczema is usually a chronic (long-term) condition. Atopic refers to the diseases involving the immune system.
The main symptoms are the inflamed skin becoming itchy, dry, cracked and sore. There are also redness and blisters on the skin. Some people only have small patches of dry skin, but others may experience widespread inflamed skin all over the body. It most often affects the hands, insides of the elbows, backs of the knees and the face. People with the condition will often experience periods of time where their symptoms flare up or worsen as well as periods of time where their symptoms will be less noticeable.
Scratching and rubbing further irritate the skin, increase inflammation, and make itchiness worse. Certain foods can trigger symptoms, such as spicy food and dairy products. Eczema can also be triggered by environmental factors like smoke and pollen.
Treatment focuses on healing damaged skin and alleviating symptoms such as reducing itchiness.
Psoriasis. As we know, skin cells grow deep in the skin and slowly rise to the surface. Eventually, they fall off. The typical life cycle of a skin cell is one month. If this process is altered, that may cause problem. For example, in people with psoriasis, this production process may occur in just a few days.
Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition caused by autoimmunity that leads to the rapid build-up of skin cells. This build-up of cells causes scaling on the skin’s surface and inflammation and redness around the scales. Typical psoriatic scales are whitish-silver and develop in thick, red patches. Sometimes, these patches will crack and bleed. Scales typically develop on joints, such as elbows and knees. They may develop anywhere on the body, including the: hands, feet, neck, scale and face.
There are different types of psoriasis. Plaque psoriasis is the most common type of psoriasis. The most common symptoms include red, raised, inflamed patches of skin, whitish-silver scales or plaques on the red patches, dry skin that may crack and bleed, soreness around patches, itching and burning sensations around patches.
The symptoms may vary over the periods, they could be worse for some time and then clear up and even unnoticeable. They may flare up again.
The symptoms differ from person to person. Areas of psoriasis can be as small as a few flakes on the scalp or elbow or as large as covering most of the body.
Some Chinese herbs can reduce skin inflammation and improve blood microcirculation to help reduce symptoms of eczema and psoriasis.
Chinese herbs often used for skin conditions are Bai Mao Gen (Woolly Grass Rhizome), Bai Shao (White Peony Root), Bai Zhu (White Atractylodes ), Bei Sha Shen (Radix Glehniae), Bo He (Peppermint), Cang Zhu (Rhizoma Atractylodis Lancea), Chai Hu (Bupleurum Root), Che Qian Zi (Plantago Seed, or Plaintain Seed), Chi Shao (Red Peony Root), Chuan Xin Lian (Andrographis), Dan Shen (Red Sage Root), Dang Gui (Radix Angelicae Sinensis), Di Fu Zi (Kochia Fruit), Lian Qiao (Forsythia Fruit), Ku Di Ding (Herba Violae), Fang Feng (Radix Ledeouriellae), Fu Ling (Poria Mushroom ),Gan Cao (Radix Glycyrrhizae, Licorice Root), Huang Qin (Radix Scutellaria), Jin Yin Hua (Honeysuckle Flower), Jing Jie (Herba Schizonepetae), Ku Shen (Redix Sophorae Flavescenti), Long Dan Cao (Chinese Gentian Root), Mu Dan Pi (Tree Peony Bark), Niu Bang Zi (Fructus Arctii), Pu Gong Ying (Dandelion), Da Huang (Rhubarb Root), Qian Cao (Madder Root), Sheng Di Huang (Raw Rehmannia Root), Tao Ren (Peach Kernel), Tong Cao (Rice Paper Pith), Tu Fu Ling(Sarsaparilla Root), Yi Yi Ren (Coix Seed), Ze Xie (Alisma), Zhi Mu (Rhizoma Anemarrhenae), Zhi Zi (Gardenia Fruit), Zhu Ye (Bamboo Leaves).
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