Eczema on hands is a broad term that encompasses the different types of eczema that develop on the hands.
The symptoms of hand eczema depend on the severity, and range from intense itching, cracks, blisters to lesions. Although the condition is not contagious, it seriously affects peoples self-esteem, working ability and social lives. Eczema treatment is determined by the type of hand eczema, thus a proper diagnosis of ones condition is necessary.
Further, it is important to note that though having eczema on your hands can be treated, it is not always curable. As a result, there are some people who have to contend with it throughout their lives.
Different Types of Hand Eczema
There are three different types of eczema, namely; Irritant Contact Eczema, Allergic Contact Eczema and Atopic Eczema.
Irritant Contact Eczema affects people whose jobs entail constant exposure to irritant substances such as detergents. As such, the repeated use of such chemicals leads to the onset of hand eczema.
Allergic Contact Eczema affects people who come into contact with chemicals which they are allergic to. This type of hand eczema results from repeated exposure to specific substances. However, unlike the Irritant Contact Eczema, it only affects people who are genetically disposed to such reactions. Identifying the exact cause of this type of eczema can be difficult, since the reaction is not immediate.
Atopic Eczema is the most common type of hand eczema, and usually affects people with a genetic inclination to allergic reactions on their skins.
The first step in eczema treatment is to consult a physician, in order to establish the type of hand eczema that one is suffering from. Failure to have a proper diagnosis and treatment may cause the condition to become chronic, which can seriously affect ones daily functioning. Depending on the diagnosis, one may need to make lifestyle changes, in order to avoid contact with chemicals that cause eczema. Regardless of the type of hand eczema that one is suffering from, this is necessary in order to facilitate treatment.
Some of the recommended treatment options for eczema on hands are allergy medications and antihistamines. Symptoms such as inflammation, itching and swelling mainly result from allergic reactions, thus the use of these medications eliminates the symptoms. Other forms of eczema treatment are emollients and topical creams, which help to sooth the hands. Petroleum jelly is an example of an emollient, which manages some symptoms of eczema such cracking and dryness.
The doctor may also prescribe topical ointments of varying strengths depending on the severity of the condition. Given that these ointments have side effects, it is important to consult a doctor prior to using them. In cases of severe eczema, the doctor may prescribe corticosteroids, which are available both orally and in topical form. These types of medication contain steroids, thus they should only be used under the supervision of a doctor, owing to the side effects associated with steroids. At the same time, these medications should not be used continuously, and are normally discontinued when the eczema symptoms abate. In cases where the symptoms of eczema cause serious infections, antibiotics maybe recommended.
Homeopathic Remedy for Eczema
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See http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001856/ for more info.