Hand Eczema is an extremely common problem. Unfortunately hand eczema is also very difficult to keep under control as we are constantly using our hands for so many things. People with hand eczema usually notice their hands becoming increasingly dry and sore. If the eczema persists, the hands often become patchy, red, scaly, inflamed and very very sore.
Although eczema is often an inherited condition, hand eczema is a condition that can be developed via contact with irritant substances. A variety of common things will trigger hand eczema.
Determine the cause to reduce the discomfort
These include an over exposure to too much dry air, soaps, detergents, chemicals, rubber gloves, certain foods and different types of clothing. The list of substances that will aggravate hand eczema is seemingly endless. But by working hard to uncover and identify the possible causes of the hand eczema, you will minimise the discomfort and distress that hand eczema brings.
It is best to consult with your doctor or dermatologist to help you find the culprit that triggers your hand eczema. They will ask you many questions on such things as other medical allergies you have experienced, what kind of items that your hands are exposed to each day and what creams or lotions you apply. They may also order a patch test, or get you to start eliminating things that you normally use in your everyday routine that could be causing or contributing to your hand eczema.
No easy cure
Unfortunately there is no easy cure or treatment for hand eczema. It may take many months for your hands to be normal again. Regardless of the cause of your hand eczema, you will want your hands to heal and stay healthy.
To help lessen the chance of your hand eczema getting worse, there are a few things you can do on a daily basis:
- Protect your hands against soaps, cleansers and other chemicals by wearing vinyl gloves (not latex or rubber). Keep a couple of pairs handy in the kitchen, laundry and bathroom areas, and always dry them out between cleaning jobs
- Wear cotton gloves under vinyl gloves if the gloves irritate
- Wash your hands in LUKE warm water, and avoid long periods with your hands in water
- Use a good moisturiser regularly and every time your hands are exposed to water.
- Apply a treating emollient to your hands several times each day.
- Use an automatic dishwasher as much as possible
- Soak your hands each day in a tub of warm water with a few drops of bath oil for about 10 – 15 minutes, dab dry and then apply your emollient.