Hand eczema also known as hand dermatitis manifests due to a number of causes such as the types of eczema, genetic factors, allergies and injuries. If it is made worse by work then it is referred to as occupational dermatitis. Hand eczema is typical in jobs that require frequent use of hands and exposure of hands to chemicals such as cleaning, metalwork, hairdressing, laboratory work and mechanical work. Eczema on the hands can vary in seriousness. It can strike in the palms, back of hands or both sides. Usually it is mild then grows in severity later. At the first sign of the disorder, the affected skin may become reddish and dry out. Later, it will become itchy. Blister filled with fluid will manifest. Scaling occurs and followed by fissures, exudation and swelling. If bacterial infection sets in the patient may feel some pain. Chronic hand dermatitis at the ends of fingers can lead to deformity in the nails. Eczema on the hand can also spread to other areas of the body near such as the feet and forearms.
Possible Causes of Eczema of Hand
A person with family history of atopic dermatitis or conditions caused by allergies is more prone to developing
eczema of hand than those who do not. This is why, it is important to be able to provide family medical history to the doctor so proper diagnosis can be made. Emotional stress is also a possible culprit. It can make an existing dermatitis of hand problem get worse. Another possible cause is the contact of external irritants. Putting your hands frequently in water is one of the occupational hazards that can give rise to this disorder. This is specifically true if the skin is constantly exposed to chemicals such as detergents in the water and solvents used for painting, for instance. These substances can strip the skin of its natural layers later. Injury and friction are the other factors that can irritate the skin and cause skin damage. The flare-up caused by the irritants can go on for months.
Allergy as a Cause
Allergy is another possible factor that can flare up hand eczema. The skin may react to substances that compromise the immune system. If the reaction is immediate it is called contact urticaria. Contact urticaria can last at most 20 minutes. Allergic contract dermatitis may last for several days. The possible causes of allergic contact dermatitis are nickel in jewelry, perfumes, hair dye and others.
If diagnosed early and managed carefully, hand eczema can recover completely. It is important to take a few days from work especially if the problem is brought about by exposure to irritants at work. If the dermatitis is serious, the patient may need to look for work elsewhere not involving contact with irritants. Avoiding contact with skin irritants is one of the best treatment options. Protecting the hands using vinyl gloves is also necessary to prevent allergic reactions. Emollients must also be utilized often. Topical steroids may also be needed to decrease the inflammation. The doctor may also prescribed oral antibiotic to stop the problem.