The skin is the largest organ in the human body, and it serves as the most external barrier that protects our system. That is why skin rashes can have many origins and be the symptoms of different things.
One of the most common causes of skin rashes are allergic reactions. These can take form in several different ways. All of which vary in the way that they are represented on the skin. Those are what we’re going to be differentiating today.
The American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology (AAAAI) listed the most common allergic skin conditions.
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Also known as Eczema, according to the Mayo Clinic, it is by far the most predominant skin problem in the world. It is more predominant in children than in adults. 1 in 5 infants suffers from it while only 1 in 50 adults have been diagnosed with it.
Specialists believe the inability to retain humidity in the skin makes it more vulnerable to irritation and inflammation caused by external agents, such as pollen.
Moreover, almost half of the severe atopic dermatitis cases have been linked to a faulty gene called filaggrin. So, there are not many people can do to prevent it.
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Allergic Contact Dermatitis
When most of us think of skin allergies, we think of allergic contact dermatitis. In this cases, touching an allergen, such as nickel, will trigger an immediate negative reaction in the form of rashes, itchiness or swollen skin.
According to the Mayo Clinic, some poison plants secrete substances that can have the same effects, even if you are not allergic to them. Poison ivy and poison oak are two well-known examples.
Colloquially known as the hives, this condition is the result of the immune system releasing something called histamine.
The latter causes blood vessels to leak which, in turn, causes skin swelling. It is known that some foods, exercise, heat, medication, insect bites, infections, and other external elements can trigger the hives.
Some people suffer from the chronic version of this skin condition for months or even years. Even though it looks bad and it’s uncomfortable, it is not contagious.
This skin problem is similar to urticaria because it is also the result of deep layer skin inflammation. In fact, most of the times if you have one, chances are you have the other.
According to the AAAAI, a negative reaction to mediation and food is the main cause of acute angioedema. However, the chronic version of this disease usually doesn’t identifiable causes.
It is important not to mistake this with hereditary angioedema (HAE). The latter refers to a serious skin condition that causes inflammation in the face, hands, feet and other parts of the body. Regular treatment is usually ineffective, and those who suffer from it need the help of a specialist.
Skin rashes of this variety are subject to different types of medication. However, you should remember to avoid any mode of self-medication. In this case, it would be best to trust a medical professional to help you identify the roof of the problem.
- “The AAAAI Award for Outstanding Research Published in the JACI by a Developing Researcher.” Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, vol. 112, no. 2, 2003, doi:10.1016/s0091-6749(04)70042-1. [ Accessed June 1, 2018]
- “Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema).” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 6 Mar. 2018, www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/atopic-dermatitis-eczema/symptoms-causes/syc-20353273. [ Accessed June 1, 2018]
- “Contact Dermatitis.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 6 Mar. 2018, www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/contact-dermatitis/symptoms-causes/syc-20352742. [ Accessed June 1, 2018]