Skin allergies are caused when the skin is exposed to a substance that causes an allergic or hypersensitive reaction. Skin allergies can vary widely from patient to patient, and substances that trigger a reaction in one patient may not cause any discomfort for others. Skin allergies can be hereditary and more common in patients who have a family history of allergies, and due to the ever changing nature of our skin, can even develop over time and constant exposure. Common allergens include fragrance, such as is found in laundry detergents and soaps, dust, pollen, and animal dander.
Skin allergy symptoms can also manifest in a variety of symptoms. The most common reaction is an itchy rash. The rash is sometimes accompanied by redness and swelling, or even a burning sensation. If left untreated, or if the allergen continues to irritate the skin, blisters may form on the skin at the site of irritation. The rash can also develop further symptoms such as oozing, crusting, or peeling, especially if the patient scratches at the itchy rash site. This can cause great discomfort and even pain if the allergen is not removed.
A rash is not necessarily an indication of a skin allergy, however, as rashes can also be caused by other conditions or even just spurred by an irritant. It is important to get to the root cause of the condition in order to avoid further flare ups. Two simple tests performed by a dermatologist can help determine specific allergens: a skin prick test or a patch test. At Dsyon Dermatology, we utilize the skin patch test.