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PERSONS COMMONLY AFFECTED

  • May affect persons of any age

FEATURES

  • Red itchy rashes or bumps
  • In severe cases, blisters (paltos) may appear
  • Lesions appear in areas of the skin that have come into contact with the allergenic material, usually following a pattern (itchiness and redness of the skin on the ring finger for someone who wears a ring with nickel and has nickel allergy)

REASONS FOR DEVELOPMENT

  • Contact with and sensitization to allergic triggers or allergens. These allergens can be substances you encounter everyday such as cosmetics, hair dyes, nail polish, fragrances, or jewelry. Sometimes, substances you encounter at work such as cleaning products, cement, or latex in gloves, may cause allergic contact dermatitis

OTHER FACTORS

  • People with atopic dermatitis or eczemas, allergic rhinitis and asthma have higher risks of developing contact dermatitis
  • Consider all possible exposures to culprit allergens – in the workplace, at home, at school, or while doing your hobbies

TREATMENT

  • The most important step is to IDENTIFY and REMOVE the exposure to allergen
  • Topical steroids may help control itching and inflammation; Oral medications may be prescribed by your dermatologist for severe cases
  • Oral antihistamines may also help decrease itching
  • Avoid scratching to prevent infection
  • Moisturizers may help repair the skin

PREVENTION

  • Avoid the trigger or allergen. Once the allergen has been identified, you should avoid items that contain that allergen (For example, people with nickel allergies should avoid jewelries with nickel, belt buckles, metal eyeglass frames; they need to cover the metal frames of their cellphones to getting exposed to nickel in the metal)
  • Use mild, unscented soaps and hypoallergenic personal care products

WHY DO I NEED TO SEE A BOARD-CERTIFIED DERMATOLOGIST?

  • The examination and investigation of allergic contact dermatitis requires a thorough history-taking and clinical exam. Likewise, it is sometimes difficult to distinguish allergic contact dermatitis from other similarly-appearing skin diseases. A board certified dermatologist has the skill and experience required to do this.
  • Patch testing may be done to identify which products or substances you are allergic to and must avoid. This is done only by board-certified dermatologists.
PDS
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