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Can contact dermatitis spread?

Dr. Akhil Gupta of Miami, FL, is a dermatologist at Kendall Dermatology who regularly works with patients who experience unexpected rashes. In some situations, this condition is known as contact dermatitis, which affects millions of Americans.

What is contact dermatitis?

Contact dermatitis is a specific variety of skin inflammation that occurs when the skin comes into contact with an irritant or allergen. The reaction might range from mild to severe and can lead to itching, redness, swelling, and blistering. In some cases, the skin may become crusted or cracked.

There are two main types of contact dermatitis: allergic contact dermatitis and irritant contact dermatitis. With allergic contact dermatitis, rashes occur when your skin reacts to a specific allergen, such as plant pollen or chemical compound. Irritant contact dermatitis is different and occurs when the skin comes into direct contact with an irritant, such as a cleaning product or detergent.

Contact dermatitis is a common condition, and anyone can develop it. It is essential that you seek medical attention if you think you may have contact dermatitis, as it can often be mistaken for certain other common skin conditions such as eczema. Treatment for contact dermatitis depends on the severity of the reaction but typically involves avoiding the irritant or allergen and using topical corticosteroids or antihistamines to relieve symptoms.

What are the symptoms of contact dermatitis?

Contact dermatitis symptoms may vary depending on the type of reaction that has occurred. While contact dermatitis can be triggered as a reaction to an allergen or irritant, the symptoms are very similar. These symptoms include:

  • Intense itching
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Blisters
  • Crusting or scaling of the skin
  • Hives

Can contact dermatitis spread?

There is no evidence that contact dermatitis can spread from skin to skin contact. However, it is possible to develop contact dermatitis by coming in contact with various items. For example, if you are allergic to metals such as nickel and wear nickel-plated jewelry, you may develop a rash where the jewelry comes in contact with your skin. If you have come into contact with a substance that has caused a reaction, wash the area thoroughly with both soap and water as soon as possible. You should also avoid further exposure to the substance.

How do I learn more?

If you are interested in learning more about contact dermatitis and other conditions that affect the skin, call Dr. Akhil Gupta and his team at Kendall Dermatology of Miami, FL, at 305-595-0393 today!

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