Dr. Ramesh maheshwari, pune
Irritated skin can be caused by a variety of factors. These includeimmune system disorders, medications and infections. When an allergen is responsible for triggering an immune system response, then it is an allergic skin condition.
Q1 what are common skin allergies?
Bumps, itching, redness and other skin conditions are very common, and their cause may not be easily identifiable. Rashes can be caused by many things, including plants (poison ivy, for example), allergic reactions to a medication or a food, or an illness (measles or chickenpox, for example). Eczema and hives, both of which are related to allergies, are two of the most common skin rashes.
Atopic dermatitis is the most common form of eczema, affecting between 10 and 20 percent of children and 1 to 3 percent of adults. A common symptom of atopic dermatitis is dry, red, irritated and itchy skin. Sometimes, especially when infected, the skin may have small, fluid-filled bumps that ooze a clear or yellowish liquid. People with atopic dermatitis often have a family history of allergies.
Hives (urticaria) are red bumps or welts that appear on the body. The condition is called acute urticaria if it lasts for no more than six weeks, and chronic urticaria if it persists beyond six weeks. Acute urticaria is most commonly caused by exposure to an allergen or by an infection. The cause of chronic urticaria is largely unknown.
Contact dermatitis is a reaction that appears when the skin comes in contact with an irritant or an allergen. Symptoms can include a rash, blisters, itching and burning.
Soaps, laundry detergents, fabric softeners, shampoos or even excessive exposure to water can all cause contact dermatitis. Other items that can cause a reaction are metals (such as nickel, a component of stainless steel and other alloys used to make costume jewelry), adhesives, nail polish, topical medications, plants and latex gloves.
Sometimes an allergen won't cause a skin reaction unless the skin is also exposed to sunlight. This condition is called photo allergic contact dermatitis. It can occur with products such as shaving lotion, sunscreen and some perfumes.
Latex allergy usually develops after repeated exposure to latex products, including balloons or medical gloves. Symptoms may include hives, itching or a stuffy or runny nose. Some people may experience asthma symptoms, such as wheezing, chest tightness and difficulty breathing.
Allergic reactions to latex are less common now, since many hospitals and health care workers have switched to non-latex gloves or low-protein latex gloves.
Q2 are skin allergy specific to different age group?
No age group specific to allergies.
Q3 what are causes of the allergies?
Causes of skin allergies-
It takes at least 10 days to become sensitive to something after your first contact with it. You might even be able to touch something for years before you have anallergic reactionto it.
But once you develop anallergy, you could have a reaction within a few minutes of coming into contact with it. Or it might take a day or two.
The mostcommon causes of skin allergiesinclude:
Nickel, a metal used in jewelry and snaps on jeans,makeup, lotions, soaps, and shampoos
Sunscreens and bug sprays
Medicationsyou put on your skin, likeantibioticsor anti-itch creams
Plants, includingpoison ivy
Latex, which is used in stretchy things like plastic gloves, elastic in clothing,condoms, and balloons
You're more likely to have certain skin allergies if you a have skin condition likeeczema(atopic dermatitis, inflammationin your lower legs because of poor circulation,itchingin your private parts, or you often get swimmer's ear.
Q4 what are the symptom?
Symptoms of an allergic reactionusually develop within a few minutes of being exposed to something you're allergic to, although occasionally they candevelop gradually over a few hours.
Althoughallergic reactionscan be a nuisance and hamper your normal activities, most are mild. Very occasionally, a severe reaction called anaphylaxiscan occur.
Common symptoms of an allergic reaction include:
Sneezing and an itchy, runny or blocked nose
Itchy, red, watering eyes
A raised, itchy, red rash (hives)
Swollenlips, tongue, eyesor face
Tummy pain, feeling sick, vomitingordiarrhoea
Dry, red and cracked skin
The symptoms vary depending on what you're allergic to and how you come into contact with it. For example, developa rash if you have a skin allergy, or feel sickif you eat something you're allergic to.
Severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis)
In rare cases, an allergy can lead to a severe allergic reaction, called anaphylaxis or anaphylactic shock, which can be life-threatening.
This affects the whole body and usuallydevelops within minutes of exposure to something you're allergic to.
Signs of anaphylaxis include any of the symptoms above, as well as:
Swelling of the throat and mouth
Blue skin or lips
Collapsing and losing consciousness
Anaphylaxis is a medical emergency that requires immediate treatment. Read more aboutanaphylaxisfor information about what to do if it occurs.
When to see your doctor about rashes
Go to the hospital immediately if you experience a rash along with any of the following symptoms:
Increasing pain or discoloration in the rash area
Tightness or itchiness in the throat
Swelling of the face or extremities
Fever of 100.4f or higher
Severe head or neck pain
Repeated vomiting or diarrhea
Other systemic symptoms including:
A sore throat
A fever slightly above 100.4f
Red streaks or tender areas near the rash
A recent tick bite or animal bite
Q5 what kind of medication can take up if affected by skin allergy?
Allergy medications are available as pills, liquids, inhalers, nasal sprays, eyedrops, skin creams and shots (injections).
Antihistamines block histamine, a symptom-causing chemical released by your immune system during an allergic reaction.
Pills and liquids
Oral antihistamines, available as over-the-counter and prescription drugs, ease runny nose, itchy or watery eyes, hives, swelling, and other signs or symptoms of allergies. Because some of these drugs can cause drowsiness and fatigue, they shouldn't be taken when driving or doing other potentially dangerous activities.
Antihistamines that tend to cause drowsiness include:
Corticosteroid creams relieve allergic skin reactions such as itching, redness, scaling or other irritations. Some low-potency corticosteroid creams are available without a prescription.
Side effects can include skin discoloration and irritation. Long-term use, especially of stronger prescription corticosteroids, can cause thinning of the skin and disruption of normal hormone levels. Examples include:
Betamethasone (dermabet, diprolene, others)
Desonide (desonate, desowen)
Hydrocortisone (cortaid, micort-hc, others)
Q6 are there any precaution for skin allergy?
Several precautions to consider include:
maintain an allergen free environment at home
focus on your bedroom: keep your pets out, eliminate the rug because it collects dust and avoid feather pillows
make sure the fireplace is well-ventilated and be careful of any leakage
keep basement and bathroom dry to avoid mold growing in these damp areas of the house
have your heating system cleaned to avoid dust mites when you first turn on the heat
Food itemsthat should be completely avoided during those couple of daysyou face itchy rashes on your body. This will help you in preventing the situation to worsen.
Foods to avoid in itchy rash
Histamine content foods
Histamineis one of those nutrients that can aggravate or highly worsen the situation of an itchy skin. These include cannedfish, smoked fish, soy sauce, champagne, beer, vinegar,mayonnaise, wine, sausages, salami and a lot more. Read the ingredients list before consuming. All kinds of fermented foods are high in histamine.
Food items thatcan increase the issues of itching skin is sea food. Fromoystersto shell fish and crabs to squids and shrimps everything should be kept at bay until you completely recover from this skin crisis.
Foods that boost the secretion of histamine
Arecertain foodsthat tend to stimulate the histamine amount in the body includingchocolates, strawberries, egg whites, citrus fruits like oranges and lemon, nuts, milk
All kinds of dairy products
From milk to yoghurt and cheese to creams, forget them for a while until you are successful in curing the skinailment
Care to taken-
Keep your body dry by avoiding outdoors during the hottest time of the day.
Take a shower to cool down or apply cool, wet towels over overheated areas.
Wear lightweight and loose-fitting clothing
Drink plenty of water
Keep skin folds clean and dry
Wear loose-fitting, clean clothing
Take shorter baths or showers
Moisturize your skin at least twice a day.
Wear protective clothing or gloves when dealing with irritants
Avoid stress injury to skin,
Prevent following things-
Perfumes and fragrances: unwanted scents
Latex in rubber gloves, condoms, and other products
Nickel: a common component of jewelry
Hair dye and tattoos
Beauty products and cosmetics
Topical creams and ointments