Seborrheic dermatitis and eczema may both belong to the dermatitis family and look similar due to the redness and dryness they cause. But in reality, they are different skin conditions. Whether you are experiencing one of these conditions or are curious to know about these skin conditions, we have got you covered. In this blog, we will take a closer look at seborrheic dermatitis vs eczema, and discover their causes, symptoms, differences, and the most effective treatment options. What is Seborrheic Dermatitis? Seborrheic dermatitis is an inflammatory skin condition. It is characterized by itching, flaking, scaling, and redness. It can appear anywhere on the body where there are oil-producing glands. But it is more common on the scalp, face, nose, ears, eyebrows, and chest. Seborrheic dermatitis is also referred to as cradle cap in babies. In babies, it is most common on the scalp, but can also show up on the diaper area, face, ears, and neck folds. Seborrheic dermatitis in babies may also cause yellow crusting, peeling of the skin, or pink patches. Causes of Seborrheic Dermatitis The exact cause of seborrheic dermatitis is still unknown, but experts believe that it is caused due to overactive sebaceous glands. It is most common in areas where there is an abundance of oil glands. It is also believed that it is caused by Malassezia yeast already present on the skin which also causes cradle cap. The researchers also believe there are some factors that can trigger seborrheic dermatitis such as extreme weather, stress, and some medical conditions. Symptoms of Seborrheic Dermatitis Seborrheic dermatitis can be identified by noticing the following symptoms: \tFlaking and scaling \tRedness \tItchiness \tYellow scales and crust \tPatches of greasy skin What is Eczema? Eczema is a chronic inflammatory skin condition. It causes redness and dry and itchy skin. It appears as rough skin patches that may cause thickening of the skin or cracking. Eczema can show up at any age but is more common among babies, children, and teens. Eczema in babies usually appears within the first year of their life. It can be more irritating in children because of the itchiness. It is difficult to stop them from scratching the affected area. Babies may outgrow eczema but in some cases, it may persist and show up again and again throughout the life as eczema flare-ups. There are many different types of eczema but the most common is ‘Atopic Dermatits’. It usually appears on the cheeks, knees, arms, legs, elbows, and wrists. Eczema may appear for the first time in adulthood, and then it is known as sudden eczema in adults. Causes of Eczema Eczema is believed to be caused when there is skin barrier dysfunction. The skin is unable to keep in moisture which leads to dryness. This dysfunction is caused by a combination of factors such as Genetics Eczema may run in families. People who have a family history of eczema, asthma, hay fever, or allergies are more likely to experience it. Allergens There are certain types of eczema like contact dermatitis which is caused and triggered by allergens or irritants. Stress Stress is a common trigger of eczema in adults. Stress can worsen the condition in people who already experience eczema flare-ups. Bacterial Infections This is uncommon but sometimes bacterial infections can also trigger eczema flare-ups. Eczema Symptoms Some of the most common symptoms of eczema are: \tRedness in lighter skin tones and may appear as purple or brown in darker skin tones. \tItching. \tCracking of skin. \tThickening of skin. \tBlisters that may ooze. Difference Between Eczema vs Seborrheic Dermatitis Key Intakes Seborrheic Dermatitis Eczema Itching Less More Age on set 0 to 6 months and again in adulthood After 3 months Location Scalp, face, neck, ears, eyebrows, diaper area Face, knees, elbows, wrists, neck folds, hands, diaper area Appearance Greasy yellow or brown scales Red skin patches on lighter skin tones and purple or brownish patches on darker skin tones. Triggers Extreme weather, stress, medical conditions Extreme weather, stress, genetics, allergens Responsiveness to treatment Yes Yes, but can appear again as a flare-up Scalp involvement Yes Not typically Age Both skin conditions can affect people of all ages. Seborrheic dermatitis also known as cradle cap in babies appears in the first few months of birth. When it appears in adulthood it is named as seborrheic dermatitis. The appearance of Rash Seborrheic dermatitis rash appears as red and greasy many times with yellow or brown crusting. However, the eczema rash can appear as just dry, or red or purple and dry. It may cause the skin to crack and blisters to appear. Location Seborrheic dermatitis usually appears in those places where oil-producing glands are abundant like the face, scalp, armpits, neck, and diaper area. However eczema can appear anywhere on the body, but it is most common on the inside and outside of the elbows, knees, wrists, hands, face, and neck. Involvement of Scalp Seborrheic dermatitis also known as cradle cap mostly appears on the scalp as yellow or brown crusts. While scalp eczema is very uncommon, there are very few cases where people experience eczema on the scalp. Itchiness Itching is a common symptom of eczema. It can cause severe itching and irritation due to dryness. Eczema itch becomes even worse at night. However, itching is less common with seborrheic dermatitis, the itch may be only caused due to scaling and crusting. Diagnosing Eczema and Seborrheic Dermatitis There are no special tests that are performed to diagnose these common skin conditions. Whereas the doctor may diagnose them based on their appearance and by examining medical history. Treatment Preventing Eczema Flare-up Eczema can not be cured permanently and it may appear again throughout life as a flare-up. However, it can be easily managed with the help of a proper eczema skincare routine. This routine may include the use of \tEczema shampoo and body wash to gently cleanse the affected area. \tEczema cream to hydrate the skin and provide relief. \tAvoid using hot water as it can worsen the condition. \tIf triggers for your eczema can be identified, try staying away from them. \tIf the itching associated with eczema is severe a doctor may consider wet wrap therapy If the condition doesn't get better with a proper skincare routine encompassing frequent hydration, or the symptoms get worse consult your doctor. They may prescribe topical steroids or oral medications. Seborrheic Dermatitis Treatment Seborrheic dermatitis can be managed with the use of gentle medicated shampoo. The shampoo can be used on a daily basis if the condition is severe. And once the condition starts getting better you can taper the use of shampoo to 2 to 3 times a week. A medicated shampoo that has pyrithione zinc as an active ingredient is an excellent choice for a seborrheic dermatitis shampoo. If in doubt, it is always best to consult a doctor before using any OTC products. Best Moisturizer For Eczema Happy Cappy offers a Two-Step Eczema Skincare Routine for Eczema. This bundle contains a non-medicated Eczema shampoo, body wash, and Eczema moisturizing cream. It is hypoallergenic and the cleanser has the appropriate pH for eczema-prone skin. We have carefully selected the ingredients of our products–oatmeal extract, licorice root extract, aloe vera, and provitamin B5 to help soothe itching, and redness associated with eczema. Best Seborrheic Dermatitis Shampoo The best shampoo for cradle cap and seborrheic dermatitis is the one that is paraben-free, sulfate-free, hypoallergenic, fragrance-free, and is specially formulated to manage crusting and scaling associated with seborrheic dermatitis. Dr. Eddie’s Happy Cappy is a great option to choose as it has all the qualities mentioned above as well as makes your hair smooth and vibrant.