Facial Atopic Dermatitis: symptoms, causes and treatment

Facial Atopic Dermatitis, also known as Facial Atopic Eczema, is a chronic, recurrent, inflammatory, skin disease. Itching is the main symptom with skin lesions ranging from mild erythema to erythroderma.

What are the main symptoms of Atopic Dermatitis?

The main symptom of facial atopic dermatitis or facial atopic eczema is definitely itching, which is intense and persistent, often present even in the absence of skin lesions. Itching also causes possible bacterial infections. Other symptoms that can occur in the process of this form of eczema are varying degrees of skin lesions.
The most affected sites are on the face, around the mouth and cheeks and around the eyes, also including the eyelids, in which case it is called Eyelid Dermatitis

At what age does Atopic Dermatitis occur?

Atopic dermatitis can affect subjects of any age, from infancy to adulthood.

Atopic dermatitis in infants and children

Infants and children are certainly the most affected. It manifests itself, mainly, around 2-4 months of age or between 6 and 8 years. The face is the part most affected in this age group.

Atopic dermatitis in adults

Although it is more common in children, atopic dermatitis also affects people in adulthood and can occur even in people over 60 years of age.

What causes Atopic Dermatitis?

The cause of Atopic Dermatitis is a strong genetic predisposition due to familiarity.

But there are many other factors:

  • Change of season
  • Damp environment
  • Lack of exposure to the sun
  • Contact with environmental dust
  • Contact with animal dander
  • Over-frequent washing
  • Physical fatigue
  • Mental fatigue, emotional stress (Stress Dermatitis)
  • Intercurrent illnesses, drug-use, etc.


People with facial atopic dermatitis are predisposed to other reactive forms such as pollinosis (atopic rhinitis) and atopic bronchial asthma. They can become sensitised to nickel. Acute adverse drug reactions may occur. They are prone to developing infectious, bacterial or viral skin diseases (herpes, warts or contagious mollusca).

What are the treatments for Facial Atopic Dermatitis?

There is no standard cure for Atopic Dermatitis or Atopic Eczema, so it is important to eliminate the concomitant factors, if possible, with preventive action. In short, to treat the dermatitis symptoms..


Conventional washing must be strictly avoided because water is known to be the main enemy of the skin in cases of Atopic Dermatitis. Dry cleaning with Potassium Permanganate is therefore recommended.

Which cream is advisable for atopic dermatitis?

As far as skin care is concerned, we recommend specific treatments depending on the stage in progress of the dermatitis, so we suggest:

Apply Lenitive Cream every evening. This cream contains zinc oxide and magnesium silicate, giving it astringent and anti-itching properties, and it is also able to absorb moisture. Ideal in the very common case of mild facial atopic dermatitis.

Apply Dermictiol Cream in the evening and massage well. Dermictiol Cream contains ichthyol sulfonate, an anti-inflammatory and anti-itching agent of mineral origin. Do not apply to eyelids and eye area.

Massage PEG Balm into the affected areas until absorbed. Apply every morning and evening. PEG Balm absorbs moisture and encourages skin peeling (desquamation) for healing.

Apply Extreme Emollient Ointment in the evening, massaging vigorously until fully-absorbed. This product has a strong moisturising action.

How long can atopic dermatitis last?

Given the many concomitant factors and the main genetic predisposition, it is extremely hard to determine the duration of the inflammation, so it is very important to eliminate, as far as possible, those behaviours that can cause the inflammation to worsen. Once the dermatitis has healed, i.e. when redness, itching and dryness are no longer present, we recommend washing the face and body with Eudermic Cleansing Base a fast-rinsing, non-foaming cleanser, particularly suitable for atopic subjects. For hair-washing, we recommend Dermictiol Shampoo.

Important Tips

Should the skin be moisturized?

Absolutely not. Atopic individuals have naturally dry skin, leading people to think that water or moisturising creams would improve the dryness. But, instead, the exact opposite happens.
Wetting atopic skin increases dryness and also itching because water dissolves the natural moisturising factors, eliminating them. Furthermore, moisture created through washing can cause the overdevelopment of skin bacteria in skin folds, causing inflammation.

Is exposure to the sun beneficial?

To the sun yes, but not to UV lamps. The sun exercises an excellent reducing action on all forms of facial atopic dermatitis, also known as facial atopic eczema. Moderate, safe sun exposure with the use of appropriate sunscreen is recommended for those with atopic dermatitis.
However, the sun’s rays will not benefit individuals with atopic dermatitis who are being treated, or have recently been treated, with cortisone or immunosuppressants.

What is the difference between Eczema and Dermatitis?

There is no difference between eczema and dermatitis, they are, in fact, one and the same.