What are the different types of skin allergies to know about? Even though most people are familiar with typical skin allergies, several different types exist. Here is a quick guide to understanding these different allergic reactions.
Contact dermatitis occurs when the allergen comes in contact with the skin. This can be something such as a poison ivy rash, or it could be wool or some synthetic material. This allergic reaction can range from being mild to very severe.
The severity of the dermatitis is directly related to how long the material is in contact with the skin and how much exposure has been received.
For example, wearing wool for a couple of hours will result in a minimal reaction and not much swelling or rashes, but if you are wearing wool for weeks at a time and constantly exposed to it on your skin, then you will probably have problems.
Urticaria is a type of skin allergy that occurs when the allergen comes in contact with the blood vessels of your skin. This type of allergy can be very mild, or it can be very severe and cause significant symptoms such as swelling, redness, and the appearance of large welts.
This type of allergy will usually occur when exposed to something for a very long period. The most common type of allergic reaction in this situation is hives; however, there are other types.
Neurodermatitis is a skin allergy that occurs when the allergen comes in contact with nerves in your skin. This will usually happen when there is an extreme reaction, such as a severe rash. Some types of neurodermatitis do not look like a rash or hives, but they cause other symptoms such as swelling and pain.
You can experience this type of allergy to any allergy or substance, making it tricky to treat since the only way you can treat it is by eliminating whatever caused it.
Erythema is a type of skin allergy that occurs when the allergen comes in contact with your skin, and there are no visible symptoms at the time of exposure to the substance. If the skin is exposed to the allergen enough over time, then it will often develop these small red patches on your skin.
Other types of erythema can be caused by allergic reactions, such as hives or poison ivy, but they look entirely different.
This type of skin allergy is like urticaria and occurs when there is too much exposure to the allergen. This type of reaction will cause a large rash and swelling on your skin, as well as blisters and possibly even painful bumps.
Impetigo is a skin allergy caused when the allergen comes in contact with the skin, but it does not cause any visible symptoms at the time of exposure. This type of reaction will cause blisters and probably some bumps on your skin as well.
Cytotoxic dermatitis occurs when too much exposure to a chemical substance, like poison ivy or poison oak. This can be caused by something that you have used for a long time, accumulated on your skin, or you can be exposed to something like poison ivy and only get a small scratch on your skin that causes this reaction.
Atopic dermatitis is the most common type of eczema. It typically appears as erythema and occasionally excoriations. It can also be dry or itchy and bleed easily. Atopic dermatitis appears to have a genetic basis, but environmental factors such as infections, food allergies, and irritants are essential triggers. Oils from nuts like walnuts seem to exacerbate the condition in atopic patients.
Photosensitive dermatitis is a common form of eczema triggered by sunlight or artificial light sources like ultraviolet lamps and tanning beds. During this condition, UV light triggers an immune response in which skin cells release chemicals like histamines, which cause swelling and inflammation.
While it can usually be controlled with creams and other medications that block the immune response, it may need to be treated more frequently.
Seborrheic dermatitis is a common type of eczema that’s often mistaken for an infection. The condition appears as erythema and excoriations, which have red borders. It can also occur as scaling, crusting, and itching. While there’s no cure for seborrheic dermatitis, it can be controlled with creams and other anti-inflammatory medications.
Allergic contact dermatitis occurs when metal ions directly contact the skin but can also happen if a metal comes into contact with the mucous membranes. Irritation occurs on any part of the skin due to high histamine release from mast cells. Symptoms include itching, redness, and blisters; even a tiny amount of metal exposure can create a reaction.
The metal nickel and its salts most commonly cause immediate-type hypersensitivity. In the case of nickel allergy, one may be allergic to anodized salts of nickel that are used in everyday items such as purses and costume jewelry. These salts are more potent than unalloyed metal.
Delayed-type hypersensitivity is usually caused by fungal infections or mold spores (Toxicodendron dermatitis). This type of dermatitis appears as a rash that consists of red bumps on your skin that can be itchy at times. Immediate-type allergic reaction is also possible but rare compared to other skin allergies.
Allergic reactions from insect bites and stings can be caused by an allergic response to the venom injected or contact dermatitis from the insect’s body parts, such as their saliva or feces. Either way, an inflammatory reaction can occur. All bites and stings should be discussed with a physician.
It is to ensure they are not related to infections like Lyme disease; Rocky Mountain spotted fever or any other bacterial infection that can occur even in previously treated areas. It is essential to treat these areas immediately with soap and water for at least 20 minutes before disinfecting with rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide.
Shingle is a painful condition caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox, but it can lead to a rash that appears on specific areas of the skin. This rash can sometimes cover the entire body, making it hard to find affected areas and causing a secondary infection.
In conclusion, skin allergies are much more varied than people realize, but there are many ways to treat them. If you do not get the type of allergic reaction you usually experience, talk to a dermatologist about why you may be having a different response.