Eczema is a common inflammatory skin condition that causes red, inflamed, and often itchy rashes on the skin. Though it may look unsightly, eczema doesn’t mean that the skin is infected or dirty, and it is not contagious. It isn’t possible to pass eczema from person to person, even if you have an active rash or you come into contact with someone who has an active rash. If you think you might have caught a rash from another person, it is most likely not eczema. What Causes Eczema? Unfortunately, doctors are still working on determining the exact cause of eczema. However, the experts are currently theorizing that the condition stems from a combination of genetics and the environment. When the body comes into contact with an allergen or irritant, it switches on the immune system to fight it off. Doctors think that people with eczema are genetically missing certain skin proteins that help protect it from outside allergens, therefore making the skin more susceptible to irritation and an over-aggressive immune response that can cause: \tDryness \tScaly skin \tInflammation (swelling, redness, and warmth of the area) \tThick skin \tFlaking \tDarkening of the affected area \tBlistering \tSmall red bumps But an eczema rash generally doesn’t just pop up out of nowhere. The rash is usually in response to an environmental irritant called a trigger. While triggers can differ slightly from person to person, the most common are things like food allergies, irritating fabrics like wool, harsh ingredients in cleaning and skincare products, dry air, extreme temperature, and fragrances. Fight Back Against Eczema Symptoms Though there is no permanent cure, the most effective way to treat eczema symptoms is a combination of trigger management and proper skincare. Since the inflammatory response is brought on or worsened by triggers, a great way to avoid that response is to avoid the triggers. Since every person’s triggers may be slightly different, the first step in trigger management is determining your specific triggers. Take note of when you get a flare-up and what you had come into contact with in the days prior. Did you try a new shampoo or laundry detergent? Was it particularly hot or cold outside? If there are any similarities from flare-up to flare-up, those are probably your triggers. Do your best to avoid them. The second piece of eczema treatment is proper skincare. Eczema-prone skin has a weakened moisture barrier, so you need to develop a skincare routine that helps strengthen that barrier and protect skin from irritants. The first step is to use a daily shampoo for eczema-prone skin like Happy Cappy Daily Shampoo and Body Wash. Hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, and approved by dermatologists, Happy Cappy Daily Shampoo and Body Wash is gentle on sensitive skin. The second step in proper skincare is regular moisturizing. Hydrated skin is safe skin, so use an eczema moisturizing cream like Happy Cappy Moisturizing Cream at least twice a day to help lock in moisture and keep the skin safe from irritants.