Cause of Dyshidrotic Eczema

If your job is causing your hand eczema, your doctor will help you determine what irritating chemicals or work practices are contributing to your condition. In addition to modifying those risks, many of the same hand-protective strategies you use at home also can help you at work. Here are some ideas:

Ironically, the more water there is in a lotion or other moisturizer, the more likely it is to worsen your hand eczema. So-called "cream" moisturizers contain more water than oil. When the water evaporates they have a net drying effect on the skin. (They are called cream moisturizers because they are white in color.) So the very best moisturizer for hand eczema is a greasy one. It has very few ingredients, holds the skin's natural moisture in and provides a protective barrier to keep irritants out.

Ingredients to Avoid:

Eventually you'll learn to be a skilled reader of labels for lotions, shampoos and other cosmetics. If your doctor has told you you're sensitive or allergic to a specific substance, of course avoid products that contain it. But there are a wide variety of other ingredients, usually preservatives, which can cause skin irritation or allergy. It's best to avoid them if you already have hand eczema.

Once you have an episode of hand eczema, your risk of having another one increases greatly. For some people, hand eczema becomes chronic. This lack of an easy fix from conventional medicine has made some hand eczema patients desperate to look for alternative treatments. How well these "natural" therapies work, though, remains unclear.

Treatment varies with the stage of the disease.

A tiny percentage of individuals with the condition note flares in their condition after ingesting metal salts, specifically chromium, cobalt, and nickel. Diets that eliminate these metal salts may help in some cases.

It is vital for people with eczema to maintain a good skincare program. Research has shown that fewer steroids are needed by those people who moisturize their eczema most frequently. The general principle involves bathing instead of showering as much as possible. When the eczema is flaring up, two baths a day might be advisable. People with eczema should avoid regular soap and instead use a substitute, usually a cream that moisturizes as well as cleans.

Frequent baths reduce the numbers of bacteria on the skin, and remove the dead skin and crust. Baths are also useful for reducing the level of itching and improving the natural moisture in the skin.