What is Dyshidrotic Eczema? - Know its Causes and Whether It is Contagious

by Heidi Ros June 30, 2019 3 min read

The tiny itchy blisters present on the sides of the fingers or the palms of the hand are signs or symptoms of ‘dyshidrotic eczema.’ It is also known as ‘foot-and-hand’ eczema or dyshidrosis. The blisters surface and disappear over time.

The mild type disappears without treatment. Patients suffering from dyshidrotic eczema of hands can manage the blisters with good hygiene, medicine, and moisturizers. The symptoms disappear when the person enters middle age. The disease affects all adults between the age of 20 years and 40 years. It affects women twice as more as men.

What Causes Dyshidrotic Eczema?

Dyshidrotic eczema can be caused by several factors such as stress, contact with several metals such as chromium salts, cobalt or other metals present in costume jewelry. Wet or sweaty feet or hands can cause the development of eczema. Humid and warm weather can contribute to the development of this disease.

HIV infection or treatment with immunoglobulin for the compromised immune system can cause the formation of this type of eczema. The common triggers of this type of eczema are pollen, the presence of nickel in various objects like keys, jewelry, eyeglass frames, cell phones, metal buttons, steel items, etc.

How Do You Get Dyshidrotic Eczema?

A person who has a family history of this type of eczema is more likely to acquire it. Apart from this type of eczema if there is a history of contact dermatitis, atopic dermatitis or hay fever, a person can acquire this disease. A rise in the outside temperatures during summer and spring and periods of severe stress are responsible for the development of dyshidrotic eczema.

Is Dyshidrotic Eczema Contagious?

This medical condition is not contagious, and you cannot acquire it by touching someone. You are likely to acquire it if you have some type of allergies such as hay fever or other kinds of eczema.

Dyshidrotic Eczema Treatment

Doctors can prescribe cream or ointment that contains a steroid and reduces swelling and assists in curing the blisters. The skin can absorb the medicine faster if wet compresses are applied after the application of the cream. In case of a severe flare-up of the condition, your doctor would suggest the use of steroids.

Antihistamine proves to be beneficial for getting relief from itchiness. For severe cases, the doctor may suggest phototherapy. The doctor may even drain the blisters in this clinic and give the patient a dose of the Botox in his feet and hands for reducing wetness and sweating. These are the common triggers for this kind of eczema.

Homemade Remedies for Dyshidrotic Eczema

You can treat pompholyx or dyshidrotic eczema by homemade remedies as well. Dyshidrotic eczema natural treatment includes the application of cold compresses to the ‘dried-out- blisters for about 15 minutes. This helps in reducing the itchiness. This must be followed by the application of a cream or moisturizer.

Patients suffering from this medical condition must apply the moisturizing creams or lotions after taking their bath or washing their hands. These are no specific or sure-shot ways of preventing the development of this type of eczema. Moisturizing and following an effective and daily skincare routine helps in improving the quality of the skin against all types of irritation. This would ensure no flare-up of eczema.

What Does Dyshidrotic Eczema Look Like?

All kinds of eczema cause redness and itching but some types like pompholyx eczema act and look different from the rest. This type of eczema appears as ‘deep-set’ blisters along edges of ties, fingers, soles, and palms. It is flaky, red in color and itches. The skin appears cracked and scaly and is associated with pain.

Dyshidrotic Eczema Diet

People suffering from dyshidrotic eczema should avoid having food containing nickel such as soybeans, nuts, chocolates, cocoa, oatmeal dried and fresh legumes, canned foods, almonds, etc. Nickel is one of the triggers of this type of eczema and hence must be avoided. The other triggers are cobalt and chromium salts. Hence those suffering from this disease should not have green vegetables, fish, clams, milk, liver, oysters, red meat, nuts, etc. as these contain cobalt.

Diet of such patients must include Vitamin C as this vitamin helps in the reduction of the absorption of cobalt and nickel. The patient must include a lot of vegetables and fruits in the diet such as strawberries, mangoes, oranges, pineapple, etc. A specific diet does not exist for all the patients suffering from the eczema diet. Thus the best thing to do is find out the foods causing eczema and remove them from the diet.

Dyshidrosis is a lifelong or chronic medical condition cannot be prevented, but you can take measures to reduce its flare-ups. Dyshidrotic eczema natural cure includes the following of regular skin care regimen. Lavender is an essential oil for dyshidrotic eczema treatment.