Contact Dermatitis: Common Allergy Triggers and How to Manage Them


Contact dermatitis: symptoms, diagnosis and treatment

Contact dermatitis is an itchy rash that is caused by certain triggers. It’s important to identify what these triggers are so you can avoid them and treat them appropriately. Here is a list of the most common contact dermatitis triggers and how to deal with them:

Hard water

Hard water is water that has high levels of calcium and magnesium content. When hard water dries on skin, it leaves a film of deposits that makes skin feel dry, itchy, and sticky. To solve this, you should get yourself a water softener and connect it directly to your water supply. This apparatus can remove the calcium and magnesium ions that result in hard water. If you do have one but still suffer from contact dermatitis, you should check if your water softener is working. The best way to tell if your water is hard is if your skin feels squeaky rather than smooth after you wash it. If this happens, you should contact a water softener repair service in Salt Lake City to do the necessary fixes for you. 

Household cleaning products

Household cleaning products are obviously not meant to be used on our skin. Products like all-purpose cleaners, laundry detergents, furniture polish, toilet disinfectants, and drain cleaners are highly irritating and abrasive when it comes in contact with the body. Even if you’re not directly applying these products to your skin, it’s possible that you’re coming in contact with them through your furniture. Make sure your furniture is dry before you use them, and wear protective gloves if you’re handling such substances while cleaning your home. You might also be able to find hypoallergenic variants of such products.


Clothing that is made of certain rough fabrics like fleece, wool, and synthetic are incredibly irritating to the skin. If you’ve been feeling itchy, especially in the winter when these fabrics are often used, check your closet for any clothing that might be made up of these materials. They should be avoided, and you should wear softer fabrics like cotton, silk, and linen instead.


Prickly heat is a condition triggered by heat and sweating. It develops when narrow ducts that carry sweat to the surface of the skin become clogged. This trapped sweat causes inflammation that leads to irritation, itching, and rashes. It usually happens in warm, humid areas, but it can also happen to people who are overdressed in cold climates. Redness and chafing can be observed in areas where sweat accumulates like in the underarms, groin, belly folds, and behind the knee. Keep your skin cool and dry with antiperspirants and powders. You should also avoid situations that induce sweating, and stay in cool, air-conditioned environments as much as possible. 


Fragrances can be found in common personal care products like shampoo, soaps, perfume, deodorants, and moisturizers. It’s easy to deal with these irritants by swapping them out for plenty of alternatives that don’t contain any fragrance and are specifically hypoallergenic. Take note, though, that even if some products are marketed as unscented, they may still contain certain oils from botanicals or herbal ingredients such as rose oil, vanilla, and almond oil, which are known allergens.

Reduce itchy, inflamed skin by avoiding and managing your exposure to common irritants. Know which are your triggers to live a more comfortable life.