Choosing the best hand eczema treatment on an individual basis can often be a matter of trial and error. Fortunately, there are quite a variety of hand eczema treatment options available, including over-the-counter and prescription medications. Lifestyle changes such as avoiding known triggers for eczema outbreaks can also be helpful. It is important to keep the hands properly moisturized when suffering from eczema of the hands, although avoiding contact with water whenever possible may also be recommended. Any questions or concerns about the most appropriate treatment methods for a particular individual should be discussed with a doctor or other medical professional.
There are several over-the-counter creams and ointments available that are marketed for hand eczema treatment. For more severe cases, prescription-strength ointments may become necessary. Some people have reported fewer symptoms when using an antihistamine on a regular basis. Antihistamines are available as an oral medication and as a topical cream. If topical ointments and antihistamines are not successful in treating hand eczema, strong oral medications may be prescribed, although some patients have reported significant side effects associated with these medications.
There are several different types of eczema that may affect the hands, so it is important to obtain an accurate diagnosis in order to develop an appropriate treatment plan. Some people with eczema are particularly sensitive to certain chemicals that may be found in household cleaners, detergents, or various beauty aids. These known triggers should be avoided whenever possible in order to prevent future outbreaks. Some food allergies or sensitivities may contribute to eczema outbreaks in some people, so an elimination diet or allergy testing may be recommended.
Water and harsh soaps can aggravate many forms of hand eczema. For this reason, it is typically suggested that those who suffer from this skin condition avoid washing the hands unless absolutely necessary, carefully patting the hands dry after washing. Hand sanitizers are available at most pharmacies and grocery stores in order to clean and sanitize the hands between washings. Alcohol can be very drying to the skin, so hand sanitizers without alcohol should be chosen for this purpose.
Ultraviolet treatments may be useful as a hand eczema treatment for some patients, although this is not always successful. This method of treatment is usually reserved for cases that do not respond to other forms of treatment. A dermatologist is a doctor who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of skin disorders and can be helpful in determining the most appropriate treatment options on an individual basis.