Dyshidrosis on the hands and feet

Dyshidrosis is an eczema (dermatitis), characterized by rash with itchy blisters on:

  • Hands
  • feet.

The condition can affect children, adolescents and adults.
Usually, the disease starts in the interdigital skin areas (between fingers or toes) and spreads to the hairless skin of:

  • Palm
  • Soles.

It rarely occurs on the back of the hand.
Only rarely can blisters form on the arms and other parts of the body.


Causes of dyshidrosis and risk factors

Dyshidrotic eczema occurs twice more often in women than in men.
An increased likelihood of developing dyshidrosis is experienced by:
1. who are under stress;
2. with diseases such as:

3. who smoke;
4. whose hands often come into contact with water or moisture;
5. which work with cement or come into contact with irritating and chemical substances, such as:

  • Chromium
  • Cobalt
  • Nickel.

6. In some cases, the disease may occur during pregnancy because hormonal changes negatively affect the skin.

The cause is unknown. The disease seems to occur at certain times of the year:

  • Spring
  • Summer.

Natural medicine assumes that this disorder is caused by the accumulation of toxins in the blood.
The toxins are mainly due to slow digestion due to an unhealthy diet and incorrect food combinations.
Exercise leads to the formation of toxins because the body needs more energy and the metabolism thus increases. The toxins are produced as waste products of cell and muscle activity.
The waste products are deposited in the skin when the body cannot secrete them otherwise, via:

  • Defecation
  • Urine
  • Respiration.

Dyshidrosis is not contagious.

Symptoms of dyshidrosis

  1. The blisters caused by dyshidrosis appear as numerous small blisters.
    They occur most often:

    • on the sides of the fingers and palms,
    • under the soles of the feet, especially in the vault.
  2. Usually the blisters are small and have a size of 1-2 millimeters.
    They usually occur in groups.
    In severe cases, the small vesicles may join together and form a large bubble.
  3. Dyshidrosis causes severe itching on the skin or even pain and a burning sensation.
  4. After three weeks, when the blisters dry out and disintegrate, the underlying skin may be reddened and painful.
  5. Dyshidrosis is prone to frequent recurrences that occur regularly over months and years.

Diagnosis and testing of dyshidrosis

  • The doctor is able to diagnose this condition of the skin by attentive observation.
  • To rule out other causes, such as a fungal infection, a biopsy may be required.
  • If the doctor thinks that it is an allergic reaction, an allergy test (patch test) may be ordered.

In differential diagnosis, the following should be excluded:

  • Psoriasis (which can form mainly on the elbows, knees and scalp)
  • Exfoliative keratolysis
  • Scabies
  • Contact dermatitis
  • Mycosis
  • Hand-foot-and-mouth disease

Treatment of dyshidrosis

Depending on the severity of the symptoms, there are the following methods of treatment:

1. Cortisone. Cortisone-based medicines in the form of creams and ointments can advance the healing process of the blisters the fastest.
To improve the absorption of the drug, the affected zones can be coated with cling film.
In severe cases, the doctor may prescribe cortisone, such as prednisone, in the form of tablets.
Side effects of cortisone can be serious with prolonged use.

2. Urea. In the pharmacy you can buy creams based on urea, which has a peeling and moisture-regulating effect on the skin.

3. Phototherapy. If previous treatments are unsuccessful, the doctor may recommend a certain combination therapy.
Light therapy is radiation with ultraviolet light after taking medications that make the skin more susceptible to light rays.

4. Ointments that suppress the immune system. Drugs such as tacrolimus (Protopic) and pimecromilus (Elidel) may be helpful for people who want to expose themselves to fewer steroids.
However, these drugs can increase the risk of infections.

5. Antihistamines. If there is an underlying allergy, the doctor may prescribe antihistamines. These medications are helpful to reduce the burning and discomfort for a short time.

6. Vitamins. Vitamin A, E and F (omega 3) can promote skin health, especially in cases of malnutrition. The vitamins are helpful to repair the damage caused by the disease; they relieve the symptoms, but do not cure the disease.

7. Wet compresses containing medicines such as potassium permanganate or aluminum acetate can relieve symptoms.


Natural remedies and home remedies for dyshidrosis

Extra-virgin coconut oil Among the well-known home remedies, there is coconut oil
, which is extracted from the inside of a ripe coconut. There are a variety of uses, from food preparation to skin and hair care.
You can also apply it only externally, which is very effective.

  • Rub a small amount of the oil on the palms.
  • Massage onto the affected areas of the skin.
  • Then protect your hands with cotton gloves.

This leaves a feeling of moisture on the hands without the need for unnatural chemical substances of a lotion.

Epsom salt/Epsom salt
Epsom salt is a natural mineral that helps eliminate unwanted acids on the skin.
There are two uses for dyshidrotic eczema.

  1. Mix a few spoonfuls of salt in a bowl with hot water until the salt has completely dissolved.
    Bathe hands in this solution for 10-15 minutes.
    This helps against the swelling and redness that these skin lesions have caused and softens the blisters, which are thus drained.
  2. Add about 450 grams to the warm bath water.

Shampoo, creams and natural cleansers
Regular hair washing with cheap products seems to aggravate the conditions for hands.

The use of moisturizers and cosmetics can trigger or worsen dyshidrosis.
An allergy to substances contained in it may be to blame, such as:

  • Disodium edta,
  • sodium lauryl sulphate (SLS),
  • Parabens.

In this case, one should switch to natural and milder products.
It is recommended to wash hands only with natural products, such as:

  • Aleppo soap,
  • Bicarbonate.

cotton gloves 
According to testimonials of some patients, dyshidrosis on the hands decreases when gloves are worn for protection.
Patients put on cotton gloves under rubber or plastic gloves before the following activities:

  • washing hair with shampoo and balm,
  • application of moisturizing or sunscreens,
  • house cleaning and use of cleaning agents,
  • Washing dishes.

This precaution does not cure dyshidrosis of the hands directly, but it is helpful because it prevents irritation.

Zinc oxide
Zinc oxide is used in creams for diaper rash, burns and skin irritation.
This substance builds up a protective barrier in the skin to protect it from irritating and moist substances.
Zinc oxide helps in cases of severe dyshidrosis with:

  • strong blistering,
  • dry skin,
  • chapped skin, which restricts the ability to move.

One should apply a thick layer to the affected areas and then wear cotton gloves.
It seems quite safe, the hands improve within 24 hours.
The blisters and cracks on the skin dry out and the skin begins to peel.

Tea tree oil. It is one of the most effective and completely natural methods of treatment against a mild form of dyshidrotic eczema.
This agent works better than locally applied corticosteroids and results in complete skin peeling.
Baths with a powder of tea tree oil are used.
This natural remedy helps to leave skin smooth and less reddened.

Aloe vera gel
True aloe vera is known for its soothing properties. The aloe vera gel helps to reduce the burning sensation.
Pure gel, without chemical components, is recommended.
Alternatively, the gel can also be extracted directly from the plant to avoid preservatives that could worsen the disease.

  • Cut open an outer leaf with a knife. The outer leaves contain more gel.
  • Remove the tougher pulp with a spoon.
  • The gel can be stored in a well-closed glass jar for a maximum of two weeks in the refrigerator.
  • Apply a layer of gel to the affected area.
  • Leave on until completely absorbed.

Perilla oil This oil
has anti-inflammatory properties. It can be taken in the form of soft pearls that contain this oil. The recommended amount is one pearl 2 to 3 times a day.

How long does dyshidrosis last? Prognosis

There is no definitive treatment for dyshidrosis.
Usually, dyshidrotic eczema heals on its own and without problems, but symptoms may recur periodically. If a patient scratches himself too much, this can cause irritated and thickened skin.
In such a situation, treatment of dyshidrosis becomes very difficult.

Complications of dyshidrosis

Pain and itching that interferes with the use of the hands.
Bacterial infection due to scratching.

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