Irritant contact dermatitis, specifically, is an inflammation of the skin caused by contact with a foreign substance. This can be any chemical substance, including soaps, detergents, and fabric softeners. The reaction can look like a burn.
- Cosmetics: Products include dyes used in hair colour, clothing, perfumes, eye shadow, nail polish, lipstick, and some sunscreens.
- Latex: Latex is found in products such as rubber toys, balloons, balls, rubber gloves, bandages, and pacifiers or nipples.
- Metals: These include nickel, chrome, and mercury. Nickel is found in costume jewellery, belt buckles, and wristwatches, as well as zippers, snaps, and hooks on clothing. Chrome-plated items may also contain nickel. Mercury is found in contact lens solutions. It may cause problems for some children.
- Medicines: Neomycin may also cause contact dermatitis. It’s found in some kinds of antibiotic creams and local anesthetic.
Some very general causes:
- Soaps and detergents.
- Spit (saliva).
- Urine in a diaper.
- Lotions and perfumes.
The skin looks Red, Swollen, Itchy, Painful, Dry, Cracked, Peeling, Bleeding, Oozing, Draining, Crusting, Blistering.
- Use wet, cold clothes (compresses) on the skin. This is to help reduce symptoms and ease inflammation.
- Wash your child’s skin with soap and water as soon as possible after contact. Wash all areas, including the face, neck, hands, and in between the fingers.
- Putting corticosteroid cream or ointment on the skin. This may help to lessen itching and other symptoms. The cream or ointment may be over-the-counter or prescription.
- Use wet dressings for oozing areas. They may help decrease itching and improve healing. Ask your child's healthcare provider or nurse for instructions.
When should I see a doctor?
- Symptoms that get worse.
- New symptoms.
- Symptoms that affect a large area.
- Symptoms around the eyes or genitals.
- Signs of a skin infection, such as increased redness, warmth, swelling, or fluid.