Salicylic acid for eczema

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Eczema is known to affect both children and some adults. This skin condition is also called as atopic dermatitis which often starts in childhood and continues until adulthood.  There are various treatment options available including self-care measures, allergy control and medications. Even though not considered serious, eczema can be bothersome and the open skin wounds can become infected. Always bear in mind that salicylic acid can be utilized to manage flaky, dry skin conditions such as eczema.

Close look on salicylic acid

The common scaly skin conditions can be managed with salicylic acid which is a topical preparation and might be utilized along with other medications and treatment options. Salicylic acid is available in various forms such as gel, cream, ointment, plaster, pad, topical solution and shampoo. Depending on the condition being treated, salicylic acid is available in doses that range from 0.5-30%.


Eczema often manifests on the arms and area behind the knees.

When managing eczema, you can utilize a solution of salicylic acid to soften keratin which is the protein that is part of the skin structure. Take note that salicylic acid helps loosen the dry skin and take away the upper layer of the skin. This will allow other topical medications to penetrate better.

Side effects of salicylic acid

The mild side effects of salicylic acid include skin irritation particularly if the skin is damaged or sensitive in the area where it was applied. The serious side effects include severe skin irritation, unusual warmth, flushing and reddening of the skin. Even though not common, salicylic acid poisoning is likely to occur and the symptoms include diarrhea, confusion, dizziness, nausea, rapid breathing, headache, ringing in the ears and severe drowsiness.

A doctor should be consulted if pregnant or breast-feeding since salicylic acid can be absorbed via the skin. Remember that salicylic acid is not recommended for children below 2 years old.

What are the symptoms?

Eczema often manifests on the arms and area behind the knees. This can also manifest on any part of the body including the neck and face. This skin condition manifests as red-colored, itchy rash with scaly or cracked skin. There are elevated, small-sized bumps that drain fluid and crust over. The rashes are often itchy, especially at night. In most cases, infants and children end up with eczema but can last up to adulthood.

In most cases, eczema only comes and goes. The flare-ups can be instigated by various factors including hot baths or showers, sweating, stress, cigarette smoke, dry air and allergies.


Depending on the severity of eczema, there are various treatment options available. Any combination of these can be used to manage eczema. As for allergy control, it will not always get rid of eczema but minimize the extent of the flare-ups.

It is recommended to avoid or regularly clean items that trap dust such as stuffed toys, carpets, mattresses, pillows, drapes and down comforters. The individual should use moisturizers, unscented soaps, calamine lotion, humidifiers and cool showers to minimize the eczema.

If the eczema is severe and troublesome, the doctor might prescribe medications to be taken such as antibiotics, corticosteroid creams, oral corticosteroids, antihistamines and immunodulators.

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