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Irritant Contact Dermatitis - A Common Modern Day Skin Disorder

Feb 10, 2008
As you have no doubt read in countless magazines and other health related articles that dermatitis is now considered to be one of the most common skin diseases of our time. It does not distinguish against any particular age group or gender and is likely to afflict both the very elderly as well as new born babies.

One of the main strains of dermatitis is known as irritant contact dermatitis and this type of skin disorder is typically triggered by the skins exposure to a chemical compound to which the sufferer reacts. The reaction is usually in the form of itchiness, rashes, and other symptoms. What is so particularly worrying about having this skin condition is that it spares no one, meaning it could affect your baby and young children who, as we all know, have extremely delicate skin. This being the case it is important to get to the bottom of the likely causes as quickly as possible in order to alleviate any discomfort that the sufferers may experience.

Here are some important facts that you should know about this skin condition so as to help you understand its symptoms and potential treatments. Once you have expanded your knowledge on this condition you will be better equipped on what steps you can take to prevent outbreaks.

How Does It Occur

In extremely simple terms irritant contact dermatitis usually occurs when chemicals or any other physical agents are exposed to skin and commence to damage the surface of the skin faster than the skin is able to repair itself. Usually the affected skin appears to have a glazed surface or there may be evidence of some redness. The sufferer may experience itching, swelling, blistering, and scaling on the affected area that is very noticeable and hard to ignore.

The severity of irritant contact dermatitis is usually Dependant on a number of different factors, such as the amount and strength of the irritant agent that affected the skin. Another important factor concerning the severity of the condition is the length and frequency of the exposure to the irritant. Lastly is the skin's susceptibility, which in essence means the skin's texture and whether it has been affected previously. There are a number of environmental factors that also contribute to the severity and frequency of outbursts of this type of dermatitis.

How Damaging Is It

Contrary to popular belief that this condition is just hereditary, it could actually affect anyone particularly if exposed to allergens such as alkali, detergents, acids, metalwork fluids and in some cases tap water. The allergens could be of a natural or synthetic composition and all depends on your skin's reaction to exposure to particular substances.

In essence what happens to your skin is that the irritants damage the exposed area by removing the body's natural oils and moisture from the skin's outer layer, allowing the irritants to penetrate deeply and trigger inflammation and other symptoms. If you are experiencing symptoms of having contracted irritant contact dermatitis it is important that you contact your doctor immediately and seek advice on how to treat your outbreak so as to assist with preventing a reoccurrence in the future.
About the Author
For more information on Irritant Contact Dermatitis and suggestions for a range of natural dermatitis and eczema treatments visit Dermatitis Natural Treatments and Cures.
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