What is the role of skin care in the treatment of atopic dermatitis (AD)?

Updated: Apr 26, 2021
  • Author: Cassandra Bradby, MD; Chief Editor: Barry E Brenner, MD, PhD, FACEP  more...
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Answer

In the acute setting patients should be instructed to bathe once-to-twice daily using mild soaps (eg, Dove). There is no preference over showers or baths, whichever makes the patient most comfortable.

The patient should dry quickly and immediately (within 3 min) lubricate the skin. Many creams and lotions are available, and the optimal one is the greasiest the patient can tolerate.

Creams (eg, Eucerin, Cetaphil) are preferred over lotions, as they have lower or no water content and will not evaporate off of the skin during the day. Parents may use petroleum jelly on infants, but most children and adults will not tolerate the texture.


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