Dermatitis is a general term used to describe skin irritation. More than 30 million individuals in the United States suffer from the disease. The skin disease occurs in various forms and is caused by a variety of factors.
The main symptoms include itchy and dry skin, reddening of the skin, and rashes. Besides, the skin might blister or have crusts that flake off. Dermatitis is not a contagious infection but makes one feel uncomfortable. Moisturizing the skin regularly can help mask the symptoms.
There are different types of the skin infection. Each form of the disease varies from the others. However, all the forms are a result of irritants and allergens.
Allergic contact is the first form of the disease. This is the most rampant type. It is characterized by red scaly rashes that are visible. Chemicals and outside sources are common sources of allergic contact. Nickel, latex, fragrances, and preservatives are the most popular irritating elements. The elements irritate the skin resulting in rashes.
Irritant contact is the second most common form of the disease. Irritant contact just affects a small portion of the skin. However, this type does not have boundaries. Additionally, the symptoms will start developing immediately the skin has been exposed to the irritant. Soaps and solvents are some of the harsh, irritating components.
Atopic dermatitis is an immunologic form of the disease. For this type, the skin reacts to various external elements. The form of the disease occurs as a skin disease. The symptoms of the disease are visible from the first six months to when a child is five years old. Most patients describe the form of the disease as a scratch that itches. Patients suffer from an irritating scratch. Since scratching results in swelling, patients are advised to avoid the itching. Medication is prescribed to prevent scratching.
Hand eczema is the next form of the disease. It represents itself on the hand. However, it has a different approach to treatment. The hands are the most exposed parts of the body. Thus, an aggressive method of treatment, different from other treatments, is advised.
Neurodermatitis affects the healthiest parts of the body. Neurodermatitis does not necessarily affect the skin. It causes an itchy sensation that irritates the nerve endings of the skin when scratched. It is an endless cycle of scratching that eventually affects the skin. The skin becomes thick and scaly. Although there are available treatments, there is a challenge in breaking the itching cycle.
There are several medication methods. Antibiotics can be used to treat the resulting bacterial infections. The scratching and itching results in open sores and cracked skins, cured by antibiotics. Creams and ointments are applied to the skin to relieve the itching and scaling.
Oral antihistamines, another form of medication, induce sleep reducing itching through the night. Phototherapy is used to soothe the skin. The use of light helps the skin increase Vitamin D production. Thus, itching and inflammation are reduced.
The skin can fail to respond to treatments. A patch testing helps in identifying the causes of the skin disease. Irritants are then applied to the skin to reduce eczema. RAST testing uses a blood test to find the cause of the disease.