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A skin allergy is when skin becomes irritated because the immune system reacted to something that is usually harmless. This is called an allergic reaction. An allergic reaction can cause rash, itching, burning, redness, bumps, hives, and swelling. Many different allergens can cause a reaction. Below are some of the most common allergic skin conditions:
The symptoms of a skin allergy vary depending on the type of reaction:
Hives and angioedema may be signs of a serious allergic reaction. Call 911 or go to the emergency room if:
See a doctor if:
To diagnose a skin allergy condition, your doctor may:
Treatment for skin allergy varies depending on the problem and the allergen, but usually includes two approaches:
Below are some recommendations for treating each of the allergic skin reaction types.
Hives and Angioedema
Allergic Contact Dermatitis
The best way to prevent allergic skin reactions is to try to find out what allergen causes the reaction and avoid it. Consider potential allergens that go directly on the skin, such as soap, shower gels, hair products, makeup, lotions, and deodorants. Foods and medicines can also cause allergic reactions, especially hives and swelling.
For eczema, keep the skin moisturized and avoid the things that cause the eczema to flare up.