In 2009 the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology published a study that found that the over the counter moisturizer called Albolene was effective in the treatment of itching and scaling from dryness caused by mild to moderate Eczema. Albolene has been used for years by women for the removal of makeup and as a gentle facial moisturizer, but how does Albolene for eczema work?
As a disclaimer, while we do our best to make sure all info is accurate, check with your healthcare provider before attempting any new treatment.
What is Eczema?
Eczema is a common condition that causes visits to the dermatologist, most frequently for kids. The damage to the skin that is linked with eczema is not from eczema, itself. The damage usually is a result of the patient scratching until the skin is open because of the extreme levels of itching and irritation they experience. If the patient's skin isn't taken care of regularly the condition will return, so it is important to keep the flesh well-moisturized in order to decrease the risk of having further flare-ups. A good moisturizer will trap the moisture that is naturally made by the body in the skin and reduce transepidermal water loss (which causes the extremely dry skin related to eczema).
Over-The-Counter Water-based Moisturizer
There are multiple moisturizers that can be purchased in the grocery store or the pharmacy with no prescription. The water-based moisturizers are more lightweight and will absorb into the patient's skin quickly but the water that is in the moisturizer doesn't get into the deep layers of the skin and are unable to moisturize the flesh. These moisturizers sometimes actually end up drying the skin out worse after they are applied to an eczema patient's skin.
Over-the-counter Moisturizers to Battle Eczema
The moisturizers that will reduce transepidermal water loss will trap the moisture in the skin if they contain mineral oils, paraffin, or petrolatum. Albolene contains all three of these ingredients, plus beta carotene and ceresin. Albolene comes in a tub, so you should use something to scoop out the moisturizer so that you keep the contents remain sanitary.
Albolene as an Alternative to Prescription Medicine for Eczema
Albolene will cost you less than $10.00 for a twelve-ounce jar and can be purchased off the shelf at your grocery store or pharmacy. This is a fraction of the cost for a small tube of prescription medicines commonly prescribed for the treatment of mild or moderate eczema. Apply Albolene as a moisturizer to the affected areas for a full month to see the results. Remember to continue to keep the area clean and moisturized so that there will not be continued eczema flares.
Get a Diagnosis Before Using Albolene for Eczema
You should be sure what you are treating is eczema. There may be a rash lurking or a different condition. You should see your physician. If the skin problem is in a child, you should schedule an appointment with the child's pediatrician. If you get an eczema diagnosis, your physician may or may not refer you to a dermatologist. You can choose to try the Albolene first, or see the physician and let him/her know that you are going to try this treatment before using a medicine that will cost you more and will likely contain steroids.