Can having clean Hands cause Dermatitis?

01/06/2021

A new study finds the practice of washing hands during the coronavirus pandemic may have lead to a new epidemic of skin problems. The study found people who wash their hands ten times a day or more were twice as likely to have skin problems such as eczema and other allergies. Researchers say the link appears to be due to dry skin, or because of a problem with the natural protective bacteria on their skin being washed away.

The findings are explained by Dr Monisha Madhumita, of Father Muller Medical College, India: “This research truly demonstrates the impact of increased hand washing and uptake of alcohol-based rubs on the hand skin health of HCPs (Health Care Practitioners) and the general public”

Researchers noted that hand dermatitis is a common problem for young women and those with jobs that expose them to chemicals. Such work includes cleaning, catering, metalwork, hairdressing, labourers, and healthcare services.

What is Dermatitis?
Dermatitis is a term for various skin conditions caused by inflammation, itchiness, and irritation. Eczema is a type of dermatitis, but there are also many others – such as contact dermatitis, stasis dermatitis (in people who have poor circulation), seborrheic dermatitis (in babies), and atopic eczema.

What Helps Dermatitis?
Dermatitis can be helped by avoiding irritants, such as detergents and other cleaning agents. Eczema, in particular, can often be alleviated by avoiding soaps with a high concentration of ‘detergent’ ingredients such as sodium laurel sulfate or using more natural products, especially those that moisturise the skin.

How can your Neath Pharmacy help me?
To find out more about choosing the best skin care for eczema or dermatitis BOOK NOW with our Wellness Pharmacists for FREE NHS Advice & Treatments*

*Wales Common Ailments scheme for pharmacies
Under the scheme, up to 53 conditions are prioritised for simple treatments that can be provided in pharmacies under a pharmacist’s supervision. In each case, NICE guidance has set out standard treatment options and/or medicines that have been shown to be effective.

The pharmacy team will be able to explain the scheme and offer advice on how you can get your medicines more quickly and easily.

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