It is important to use the correct amount of topical steroid for your eczema, as instructed by your healthcare professional. Topical steroids should be applied with clean hands so that the skin just glistens. It can sometimes be difficult to judge how much steroid to use and there are guidelines on the amount required to cover body areas that are affected by eczema. These are based on the Finger Tip Unit (FTU), and explained in detail in our fact sheet which you can download as a pdf from the related documents to the right of this page.
Please remember that each skin care product may work differently for different people. Some may find significant, immediate and prolonged relief for itch, while others find mild to moderate relief and yet others may not see any benefits. Likewise, some may find a product that deliver tremendous skin improvement after 2 weeks of use, others may seen a similar benefits after 6-8 weeks. Of course, there are those who just need to find alternative products for relief. That is why you need to try and find the products that work for you. Check out the http:///resources/ where there are other good resources.
The word steroid makes many people nervous because it reminds them of anabolic steroids, which are used in body building for weight gain and muscle mass. The types of steroids in topical corticosteroids are completely different from anabolic steroids and their risks. The use of topical steroids is associated with only rare and minimal side effects. The risks of side effects are dependent on the size and area of skin being treated, the length of time the treatment is being used and the nature of the skin problem. Some local side effects of topical steroid use are atrophy, which is a mild thinning of the skin that corrects itself over a short period of time, and temporary loss of skin pigmentation on the treated area. This side effect usually occurs in darker skinned patients.