Allergic contact dermatitis

What is allergic contact dermatisis?

I didn't know at the time allergic contact dermitis is a form of eczema. A few years ago I started to develop a rash around the skin on my finger where I wore my wedding and engagement rings.

This made it very uncomfortable for me to wear the rings and for a while I felt down because I couldn't wear them. After various attempts at discovering what was causing the soreness and itchiness, I eventually tied it down to the nickel in my wedding and engagement rings.

After further research it transpired this rash was indeed a form of eczema. We changed the rings to those without nickel and the reaction subsided.

The reaction occured because the body's immune system reacted against the nickel in the rings and because this can develop over a period of time, it was well over 3 years before the symptons started to show as a painful rash.


In children their surroundings can induce this form of eczema, so it's important to realise that an outbreak of eczema may not necessarily be treatable unless the cause of the symptoms can be eradicated. So whatever is causing the allergic reaction isn't removed then no matter how many creams you try the chances of stopping the reaction will be severely limited.

As a child my husband had a reaction to soil, so when he played in the garden any contact with the soil would cause a reaction. Any attempts to relieve the reaction with cream would have been pointless, if my husband had continued to play with the soil, so in the end his parents learnt that as long as he didn't play with the soil, there was no reaction.

Likewise with anyone whose looking at why they are getting a similar reaction, the focus needs on preventing it instead of trying to cure it, especially with allergic contact dermatitis.