13 ways to get rid of dyshidrotic eczema fast
Dyshidrotic eczema (also called pompholyx) is a type of skin condition (eczema) that causes the appearance of tiny fluid-filled blisters on your hands and feet.
To get rid of dyshidrotic eczema fast, you may follow these 13 tips:
- Use cold compresses: Soaking the affected hands or feet in cold water or using cold compresses helps relieve symptoms such as itching. Apply cold compresses for 10 to 15 minutes at a time, two to four times a day.
- Apply topical corticosteroids: Over-the-counter (OTC) corticosteroid creams or ointments help reduce skin inflammation and discomfort. You may apply them after you use cold compresses.
- Apply topical pramoxine: It is a numbing medicine and is available as creams or lotions. Topical pramoxine helps reduce itching, burning, and pain. Thus, it helps reduce the urge to scratch your skin, which may lead to delayed healing and infections.
- Take antihistamine pills: Antihistamines lower the release of chemicals that cause itching. You may take antihistamine medications available OTC as per the label instructions. They will help relieve any underlying allergic conditions that are often seen with dyshidrotic dermatitis.
- Apply moisturizers or emollients: Dyshidrotic eczema can leave your skin dry, crusted, and irritated. Apply emollients to soothe your skin.
- Avoid potential triggers: Avoid triggers such as exposure to certain metals (cobalt and nickel), cigarette smoke, certain foods (chocolate, mushrooms, canned foods, and coffee), sun exposure, and personal care products that contain harsh chemicals or fragrances.
- Nickel-sensitive people must particularly avoid nickel-rich foods including foods cooked in nickel-plated utensils, oysters, canned foods, herring, beans, mushrooms, asparagus, onions, corn, spinach, tomatoes, peas, cocoa, chocolate, baking powder, whole-grain flour, pears, rhubarb, and tea.
- Cobalt-sensitive people must avoid cobalt-rich foods such as coffee, cocoa, tea, chocolate, whole-grain flour, beer, apricots, beans, beets, cabbage, cloves, liver, scallops, and nuts.
- Take adequate rest: If your feet are affected, you may need to avoid walking or standing as much as possible. You may need to avoid activities that involve pressure on or irritate your hands in case of hand involvement.
- Manage stress: Stress is an important trigger for dyshidrotic dermatitis. Moreover, skin lesions can cause considerable anxiety and stress. You may practice meditation, yoga, or other stress management techniques. Consult a mental health professional if there is considerable stress or anxiety.
- Get appropriate treatment: If you have some infection such as an athlete’s foot, get proper treatment. Many people find relief in their dyshidrosis symptoms by taking treatment for athlete’s foot.
- Ultraviolet (UV) light therapy: Your doctor may recommend UV A light therapy with or without the use of topical psoralen to relieve your symptoms.
- Systemic corticosteroids: In severe or resistant cases, your doctor may recommend corticosteroid pills or injections given in the muscle.
- Antibiotics: Your doctor may prescribe antibiotic pills or ointments if there is a bacterial infection present.
- Other treatment options:
- Topical calcineurin inhibitors (such as tacrolimus and pimecrolimus)
- Botox (onabotulinum toxin A) injections into the skin
- Immunosuppressive medications (such as cyclosporine, azathioprine, mycophenolate mofetil, and methotrexate) that may be given in refractory or difficult to treat cases
- Nickel chelators (such as disulfiram) that may be given to people with diagnosed nickel sensitivity
- Drainage of collected pus or larger blisters (bullae)
Can you prevent dyshidrotic eczema?
There is no definitive way to prevent dyshidrotic eczema because its exact cause is not known. You can, however, prevent its flare-ups by avoiding triggers such as nickel or cobalt jewelry, managing stress, and practicing proper skin care.
- Use lukewarm water and mild cleansers to keep your skin clean followed by the application of mild moisturizers.
- Avoid exposure to extremes of temperatures.
- Wear gloves and other protective gear at work, especially if you need to come in contact with detergents or cement.
How do doctors diagnose dyshidrotic eczema?
Dyshidrotic eczema is typically diagnosed by the doctor based on your signs and symptoms. Your doctor may ask if you have any allergies, a family history of eczema, your occupation, and any medications you are on.
In confusing or difficult to diagnose cases, the doctor may order certain tests such as:
- Blood IgE levels (levels of a type of antibody, called IgE, that is typically increased in allergic conditions)
- Allergen testing (to diagnose whether you have hypersensitivity or allergy to any substance)
- Blood levels of a substance called thiopurine methyltransferase to calculate appropriate azathioprine dosages
- Blood tests or biopsy to rule out other conditions
Furthermore, you must contact your doctor if...
Can you cure dyshidrotic eczema?
Dyshidrotic eczema cannot be cured. The condition, however, can be appropriately managed with treatment and avoiding triggers. Some people may get a few episodes that come and go, whereas others may have more frequent flare-ups.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Amini, Sadegh. "Dyshidrotic Eczema (Pompholyx) Treatment & Management." Medscape.com. June 20, 2022. <https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1122527-treatment>.
"Dyshidrotic Eczema." Mount Sinai. <https://www.mountsinai.org/health-library/diseases-conditions/dyshidrotic-eczema>.
"Dyshidrotic Eczema." National Eczema Association. <https://nationaleczema.org/eczema/types-of-eczema/dyshidrotic-eczema/>.
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