Eczema is often used as an umbrella term for dermatitis, or inflammation of the skin. There are many different kinds of eczema and sometimes the cause is unknown. The common finding is red, inflamed, scaly and itchy skin. Atopic dermatitis is the most common form, has a genetic component, and is associated with asthma and allergies. It usually starts in childhood but can occur in all ages. Other forms of dermatitis include dyshidrotic eczema which affects the hands and feet and contact dermatitis which occurs due to exposure to a particular allergen.