Have you had a particularly rough allergy season this year? If so, you're not alone. Allergies are very common, affecting approximately 24 million people across the U.S.
When a sudden eczema flare-up or itchy rash comes out of nowhere, there's no need to fret. Board-certified dermatologists like myself understand it can be challenging to find the right solution that provides immediate relief and long-lasting results.
If this is your first time suffering from an allergy rash, dermatologists are your first line of defense to understand if your skin issues have something to do with seasonal allergies.
How Allergies Affect The Skin
Allergies trigger coughing, sneezing, itchy eyes, and even a scratchy throat. Trust me. I know all too well how bothersome it can feel! Allergens in the air can also exacerbate skin reactions like dryness, itchiness, and irritation.
Dust and pollen can cause chain-like reactions that prompt the immune system to produce antibodies that release histamine into your bloodstream. Histamine is an internal organic compound that smoothly causes muscles to contract and vessels to dilate. The skin becomes more sensitive, increasing your chances of scarring and long-term damage.
If you notice any signs of atopic dermatitis (eczema), hives, or scaly patches, it's important to see a dermatologist promptly. Being prone to these skin issues is many times related to your allergy history and exposure as well as having a genetic predisposition.
- Eczema, otherwise known as atopic dermatitis, is an inflammatory skin condition that usually develops in early childhood and correlates with your family history.
- It is usually triggered by an allergen or infection. More research is showing a correlation with an imbalanced gut and skin microbiome with increased flares.
- The first warning sign is redness, followed by raised or scaly defined patches on the arms, legs, face, and/or across the body.
- It causes itchiness, dry skin, scaly patches, blisters, and rashes.
- In addition to atopic dermatitis, the following conditions also have eczema-like rashes:atopic dermatitis, contact dermatitis, dyshidrotic eczema, nummular eczema, seborrheic dermatitis, and stasis dermatitis.
- The best treatments include nourishing moisturizers, antihistamines, and topical steroid creams. There are systemic prescription medications for more advanced treatments.
- Hives (urticaria) are sometimes confused with eczema. Allergies can cause raised red bumps, welps, or splotches on your skin.
- Hives can feel itchy or have a burning, stinging sensation. Airborne allergens like tree pollen, grass, mold spores, and pet dander can cause flare-ups. There are a variety of other causes, like foods, stress, medications, infections, and others that a dermatologist and allergist can help you figure out.
- These skin lesions will likely fade within 24 hours, but you can continue to develop new lesions for several days or longer in severe conditions.
The most important thing you can do for your skin is to leave it alone. Scratching will release more histamines, worsening the irritation! Topicals like hydrocortisone cream and a nourishing moisturizer can help keep symptoms at bay.
Best Remedies For Dry, Irritated, Cracked Skin
When you have a skin rash from seasonal allergies, it would be best to see a dermatologist for skin allergies instead of an otolaryngologist (ENT doctor), as they only specialize in conditions and disorders affecting your ears, nose, and throat. Dermatologists will treat anything regarding your skin, hair, and nails. Some of my favorite products:
- VidaDerma Gentle Antioxidant Soothing Cleanser is my go-to for gentle cleansers! It provides nourishing hydration for your sensitive skin with a rich soap-free formula. The soothing antioxidants and botanicals protect, refresh and nourish.
- VidaDerma Lipid Replenishing Cream is perfect for locking in moisture. It contains lipids to provide essential nourishment and replenish the upper layers of the skin barrier.
- First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream will do the trick with its thick, rich repair cream. With the help of Colloidal Oatmeal, Shea Butter, soothing Eucalyptus Oil, and ceramides, it provides immediate relief and visible improvement for distressed skin on the body and face.
- La Roche-Posay Lipikar Wash AP+ Body and Face Wash lock in moisturize for extra dry, sensitive skin. The foaming wash will protect your skin from the drying effects of water, leaving your skin feeling smooth and soft.
- La Roche-Posay Lipikar AP+M heals dry, rough skin. Its gentle formula replenishes the skin's essential lipids and provides long-lasting hydration. The cream is enriched with La Roche-Posay Prebiotic Thermal Water, Shea Butter, Glycerin, and Niacinamide.
- La Roche-Posay Cicaplast Baume B5 relieves dry skin and visible irritation on the face, lips, body, and hands. The non-greasy, non-sticky formula leaves a matte finish.
- Avène Cicalfate + Restorative Protective Cream is a post-biotic, protein-rich restorative skin cream. Accelerate your skin's recovery with this fact-acting skin treatment.
- AVEENO | Eczema Therapy Daily Moisturizing Cream and AVEENO | Soothing Bath Treatment With 100% Natural Colloidal Oatmeal is formulated to soothe irritated skin. Both products are mild enough to relieve even sensitive skin and designed to leave the skin moisturized with long-lasting protection.
- CETAPHIL Gentle Skin Cleanser is great for all body types. The cleanser will leave even the driest skin feeling renewed and refreshed. The pH is balanced, with a fragrance-free formula and hypoallergenic for those with seasonal allergies.
- Neutrogena Hydro Boost quenches extra-dry skin! This face moisturizer is long-lasting and hydrating, with a non-comedogenic formula that is free of oil, dye, and fragrance. It is highly recommended!