Red Bumps on the Hands, Especially in the Creases
A number of conditions, from bug bites to skin conditions, can cause red bumps on the creases of your hands. The constant exposure to water and irritating cleaners that your hands undergo can often further irritate them and worsen the condition. Because different causes require different treatments, an accurate diagnosis from your doctor is crucial.
Atopic dermatitis, or eczema, is a chronic skin condition that causes a red, scaly rash on the creases of your hands, feet and elbows, as well as on the feet, ankles and neck. Eczema robs the skin's ability to retain moisture, so people with the condition often experience all-over dry, easily irritated skin with a rough texture. Scabies, an itchy skin condition caused by microscopic mites, often afflicts warm, moist areas of your skin, including between your fingers and under your nails. The bumps look like tiny pimples or hives and might crust or scale over as the condition advances, says the American Academy of Dermatology.
Eczema is a mixture of dry skin and allergies, according to the Ask Dr. Sears website. Although there is no cure for the condition, proper treatment and management can reduce the frequency of flare-ups and control the itching. Your doctor can recommend a combination of oral antihistamines, topical steroid creams and lifestyle changes to help you manage the eczema, according to the Cleveland Clinic. The standard treatment for scabies involves the application of 5 percent permethrin cream from the neck to the knees before bedtime. When applying the cream, pay special attention to skin creases in the hands and feet.
Because scabies is highly contagious, everyone in your family or group -- including close friends and school or day care classmates -- will need treatment, even if they don't show signs of infection. You also must eliminate the mites in your home. Change your bedding and wash it, along with other laundry, in the hottest water possible. If you can't launder some items, the American Academy of Dermatology suggests sealing them in plastic bags and placing them in the garage for two weeks.
You can minimize eczema flare-ups by keeping your skin well moisturized and by avoiding irritants and allergens that might provoke a reaction. The Ask Dr. Sears website recommends using a moisturizing soap with no added perfume and applying a daily moisturizing lotion two to four times a day. Avoid scented or perfumed hand lotions and creams. Wash your hands well after gardening, mowing the lawn, dusting or cleaning the house. Environmental irritants might trigger an eczema flare-up.
Although it occurs rarely and only with the strongest creams, regular exposure to the steroids used to control eczema itching can affect hormone levels and cause growth problems in children. Only use steroid creams, even over-the-counter ones, when recommended by your doctor. When necessary, use the creams for the shortest time possible.
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