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Contact Dermatitis Treatment

Updated on November 13, 2013

This situation is called contact dermatitis and is manifested by superficial skin eruptions that are accompanied by itching, redness, scabs and areas of thickened skin. Some people may suffer from scales and even blisters with contact dermatitis.

There are two basic types of contact dermatitis, irritant and allergic. In the case of irritant which is the most common, a sensitive person would be in contact with a substance that causes direct damage and also fast local irritation in the area of contact as well as around it. Regarding the allergic type, it would be your immune system reacting at much a later stage showing symptoms.

Contact dermatitis usually affects the hands and arms but can occur anywhere on the body such as the neck, around the hair, behind the ears, eyelids, armpits, genitals or even feet.

Substances that most commonly cause contact dermatitis

  • Detergents and harsh soaps.
  • Nickel: in jewelry (costume jewelry), watches, buttons, buckles, zippers, hooks, scissors, coins.
  • Chromium in steel industry, textiles, photography, metallurgy and cement.
  • Mercury disinfectants, old dentures, contact lens solutions.
  • Latex gloves, condoms, tires, inflatable balloons, toys, pacifiers, elastic bandages, tape, bandages, upholstery.
  • Cosmetic nail polish, eye shadow and creams containing lanolin.
  • Perfumes and fragrances.
  • Newsprint.
  • Plants: phytophotodermatitis.
  • PPDA (para-phenylenediamine) in hair, black henna tattoos.

There is also contact dermatitis related to the occupation (occupational dermatitis or professional) that usually affects people who are exposed for years of the same job. e.g. a trigger substance as chemicals for cleaning, painting, etc.

Folk Remedies

Remedy for contact dermatitis # 1: Prepare 250 grams of dried comfrey pint sunflower oil and heat in a water bath for 2 hours. Strain the mixture and store the liquid in a frosted glass bottle with a tight lid. Apply on the skin when contact dermatitis appears.

Remedy for contact dermatitis # 2: Pour a handful of plant dandelion in a liter of boiling water. Cover, let it cool and strain. Dip a cotton cloth in it and place over the affected area for a few minutes.

Remedy for contact dermatitis # 3: Place 250 grams of dry plantain in half a liter of sunflower oil and heat in a bath of water for 3 hours. Strain the mixture and store it in a sealed glass jar. Upon signs of contact dermatitis (itching or burning) apply to the skin.

Remedy for contact dermatitis # 4: Pour a handful of dried leaves of mallow in a pint of boiling water, cover and let it cool. Soak a cloth with the mixture and apply it (cold) to the skin.

Remedy for contact dermatitis # 5: Boil a handful of thyme in a liter of water for about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and, wash the skin especially the blistering areas as thyme possesses antiseptic preventing infection.


Detecting the substance that causes the contact dermatitis and avoid it at home and at work.

Eating foods that are rich in vitamins C, B, E and A, and also zinc and which has been found to help treat the intake of contact allergies.

Use moisturizers and creams for hypoallergenic skin to protect water, climate and tough conditions.

Avoid hot water and, instead, use fresh water for bathing and washing dishes.

Handle carefully foods like oranges, lemons and peppers, as they may cause a burning sensation in the affected skin.

Use organic soaps with limited chemicals to wash dishes.

Do not wear gloves, condoms or latex balloons if you suffer from this type of dermatitis.


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    • Hezekiah profile image

      Hezekiah 4 years ago from Japan

      Thanks, it's quite an issue here in Asia.

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 4 years ago from America

      I once got contact dermatitis from nickel and once from a cream. Thanks for sharing this information. Voted up.