What Is Allergic Eczema?
An allergic reaction can take a number of forms. For some people, breathing becomes difficult, they cough, and they experience burning eyes and a runny nose. Other allergic reactions cause changes in the skin. Allergic eczema is an itchy skin rash that develops when you come into contact with an allergen. The condition often occurs hours after you have been exposed to the substance that causes the allergic reaction.
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Allergic eczema is also known as:
- allergic dermatitis
- contact dermatitis
- allergic contact dermatitis
- contact eczema
What Causes Allergic Eczema?
Although allergic eczema can develop because of an immune response to any substance, some common triggers include:
- nickel, which can be found in earrings, jewelry, belt buckles, and metal buttons on jeans
- perfumes found in cosmetics
- certain clothing dyes
- hairdressing chemicals and hair dye
- antibiotic creams or ointments used on the skin such as neomycin
Allergic eczema may also result when the skin is exposed to chemicals in the presence of sunlight. One example is an allergic reaction that occurs after using sunscreen and spending time in the sun.
How Is Allergic Eczema Treated?
If your symptoms are mild and do not bother you, no further treatment may be needed. You may wish to use a moisturizing cream to keep the skin hydrated and to repair damage. Over-the-counter corticosteroid creams can help with itching and inflammation.
If your symptoms are severe, your doctor may recommend prescription-strength ointments or creams. Corticosteroid pills or a shot can also be prescribed if needed.
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