Spongiotic dermatitis is a skin condition medically recognized as a form of acute eczema. This illness affecting human dermis causes pronounced itchiness, irritation and, sometimes, even pain. Due to these aggravating symptoms, patients, in hope to relieve the discomfort, often aggressively scratch affected areas. This irrational behavior often worsens the condition by increasing the risks of infection and scarring.
The irritating symptoms of spongiotic dermatitis may awake the feeling of hopelessness, but keep in mind, the sky is not as gloomy as it may seem at times. This skin condition is relatively easy to treat and, frankly, even easy to prevent. Keep on reading and you might just find an effective spongiotic dermatitis treatment for yourself.
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Symptoms of Spongiotic Dermatitis
Spongiotic dermatitis is often referred to as spongiotic psoriasiform dermatitis.
This particular illness affects human dermis three times more likely in men than in women
When looking at spongiotic dermatitis pictures available online, a viewer may at first glance think that this condition resembles any other rash-like outbreak. The symptoms of this illness may seem generic; however, they are still distinctive enough for a professional to make a proper diagnosis.
If you haven’t yet been diagnosed with spongiotic dermatitis, take a look at this list of symptoms and compare it to your unknown outbreak on the skin:
- Severe itching, especially felt at night
- Inflammation of the skin which is caused by the release of histamine. Histamine is active substance in the body responsible for inflammatory response to allergens, infections and physical damage.
- Red patches on the skin that often turn into brownish-gray color or even black, when left untreated.
- Small, protruding bumps, blisters, that contain fluid
- Thickened, dry, scaly, and cracked skin
- Sensitive, swollen, and raw skin that usually occurs due to scratching
These symptoms usually affect skin on chest, buttocks, and stomach. It is unusual for these signs to appear on head or scalp. Even if the targeted locations are private and not exposed to the public, they still can make a patient feel insecure to the point when question “Is spongiotic dermatitis contagious?” starts burdening the patient’s mind. Gladly, this illness is not contagious sand cannot be transmitted to another person by any kind of contact.
Causes of Spongiotic Dermatitis
When signs of chronic spongiotic dermatitis suddenly and recurrently affect the skin, a person has to evaluate and take into consideration all possible causes of this physically and mentally draining condition. Are the internal changes within your body responsible for the rash-lake outbreaks or are the environmental elements irritating your skin to the point of such aggressive response?
Here is a list of possible spongiotic dermatitis causes and triggers:
- Food allergies
- Cosmetics, dyes, skincare products, harsh detergents, soaps, cleaning supplies, and solvents
- Insect bites
- Environmental factors, such as temperature extremes
- Bathing and showering in too hot water
- Exposure to tobacco smoke, perfumes, pollutants and some metals, such as nickel
- Wearing clothes made of irritable materials, such as wool
- Stress and hormone fluctuation
- Exposure to UVA or UVB sun rays, especially if you are photosensitive
- Certain foods, for instance, milk, eggs, wheat, peanuts, soybeans, and fish may trigger the outbreaks
- Certain illnesses, including Parkinson’s disease, congestive heart failure, and HIV/AIDS can make a person more prone to spongiotic dermatitis.
Successful identification of your trigger factors will help you make a giant leap towards long-running recovery. You can detect your trigger factors easily. Simply keep a page in your planner solely dedicated to monitoring the foods you ate and skincare products you used in the time when your flare-up started coming through. Just know that the symptoms of your skin condition may not appear immediately, which means you will have to keep monitoring for hours or a few days if necessary.
Previously mentioned list of symptoms may seem straightforward and generic in nature, but does every patient develop the same set of symptoms? No, symptoms of spongiotic dermatitis vary from person to person. One patient may develop blisters and pain, while other face just redness and itchiness.
So, what is the best way of determining what condition you have? Well, the answer is simple: medical diagnosis.
Every successful treatment starts with the correct diagnosis that paves the foundation from where you and your doctor can build personalized therapy.
Diagnosis of spongiotic psoriasiform dermatitis is simple. Your physician will scrape a tiny piece of affected skin and send it to a laboratory for a histological examination. A professional will determine whether your rash-like symptoms are attributed to spongiotic dermatitis.
Spongiotic dermatitis pictures
How to treat and prevent spongiotic dermatitis
NOTE: Following treatments are general in nature and are not a recommendation or substitute for the treatment provided by your medical specialist. If you are having any doubts or concerns about any of the listed remedies, consult your medical specialist beforehand.
- Avoid irritants
The best way to alleviate the symptoms of your current flare-up and prevent future reoccurrences is to track down the irritants responsible for your illness. Based on this information you can then accordingly tweak your lifestyle to minimize the exposure to them.
If you notice that after eating peanuts, eggs or soybeans your skin on the chest, abdomen or buttocks starts turning red and developing other signs of spongiotic dermatitis, change your diet to avoid allergic reactions.
On the other hand, your personal hygiene routine may be too harsh for your skin as well. Don’t shower with overly hot water because it will dry out your dermis and completely remove the protective and moisturizing layer of sebum, which is skin’s natural oil. Harsh chemicals in skincare products may be a trigger factor for your reoccurring flare-ups as well. Simply switch to hypoallergenic soaps and detergents for a more skin-friendly experience.
- Don’t scratch yourself
However high your temptation to scratch the patches on your skin may be, don’t do it because such rough handling of already affected skin can lead to further complications. Scratching may wound your skin and increase the risks of secondary infections. Symptoms of secondary bacterial infection include pus drainage, fever, and pain. If you notice these signs seek medical attention immediately.
With aggressive scratching, you may even pop one or few of your blisters and make the irritant fluid ooze out of them. When this occurs, a crust forms on the affected skin within a couple of days.
If you simply cannot control yourself, you can occasionally apply few bandages to areas that are badly affected by spongiotic dermatitis. This measure will temporarily protect your skin from irritants; however, do not apply bandages on your skin frequently as they may cause more irritation.
- Hydrate and moisturize your skin
You can reduce and prevent the dryness, itchiness, and irritation of your skin by making sure it is well hydrated and moisturized. You can accomplish this goal with few different techniques. First and foremost, introduce a humidifier to your room and avoid being outside when temperatures are at extremes. Now, you can take a look at this list of tips on how to maintain a healthy skin:
- When showering, use a gentle cleanser made for sensitive skin and avoid pouring excessively hot water on yourself, as this may dry and burn your skin.
- Moisturize your skin at least twice a day, once after you’ve done showering or bathing when your skin is still damp, and once later on in the day, whenever convenient, by using natural moisturizing oils, for instance, coconut oil.
- Use uncolored and unscented moisturizers to prevent any risks of irritation. If you are not completely sure what moisturizing product would be best for your skin type, ask your medical specialist of pharmacist for professional advice. Generally, for people that are affected by spongiotic dermatitis, it is best to use thicker products, such as creams and ointments rather than lotions.
- Every once in a while you can make yourself a bath in which you can add a sprinkle of backing soda or uncooked oatmeal. This natural remedy will help you lock the moisture in your skin. Just make sure to moisturize afterward as well.
- Last but not least, drink plenty of water during the day. Eight glasses of water daily will help you preserve the health of all organs, not just the skin.
- Cold compress
A cold compress can provide you rather immediate relief from inflammation and itching. Both these symptoms of spongiotic dermatitis are caused due to the release of histamine in the blood. Low temperatures of cold compress will slow the blood circulation on the affected area and, therefore, lower the impact of histamine’s inflammatory immune response.
Simply wrap an ice pack or bag of frozen beans in a washcloth and apply it to your affected skin for 10 to 15 minutes. When done, wait at least 2 hours before repeating the application. Use cold compress as needed and don’t apply the ice directly on your skin because it may cause the frostbites.
- Over-the-counter and prescription medications
When you have been given an accurate diagnosis, your doctor will help you identify your trigger factors, as well as advise you to use either over-the-counter or prescription medications to treat the symptoms of existing flare-up.
Most over-the-counter medications for the treatment of spongiotic dermatitis come in the form of creams and ointments for topical application. For instance, calamine lotion and anti-itch creams containing at least 1% of hydrocortisone provide relief from skin inflammation. irritation and itchiness. Menthol-based creams and corticosteroid creams used in the treatment of different types of eczema also treat skin inflammation.
Sometimes, topical treatments are simply not enough. If your symptoms don’t diminish with the help of creams you doctor may advise you to use over-the-counter antihistamines that block the histamine from perpetuating the inflammation. If your doctor sees fit to prescribe you a stronger topical or oral steroids, or even antibiotics, in case you have developed an infection, make sure you are informed about possible side effects, as these aggressive medications can cause serious consequences to the body when used incorrectly or for a longer period of time.
NOTE: Never use any of the over-the-counter medications, whether in the form of cream or pills, without your doctor’s consent, especially if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or if you are already taking some other drugs.
Conclusion + Last tips
Spongiotic dermatitis is a skin condition predominantly affecting men. The symptoms appearing on the chest, abdomen, and buttocks include redness, inflammation, blisters, and itchiness. These signs sound quite generic, which makes a histological examination the essential key to opening the doors of different treatment possibilities.
These possibilities include home remedies, such as cold compress or taking a baking soda or oatmeal bath, over the counter and prescription medications. These solutions may cure the itchiness and inflammation of your current flare-up, but for the long-run improvements, you will have to identify irritants liable for you body’s aggressive immune response.
To make sure your recovery is as successful as possible take a look at these last tips on how to treat and prevent spongiotic dermatitis:
Wear loose, cool, smooth textured clothes that won’t irritate your skin and that won’t cause excessive sweating. Don’t wear wool clothing.
- Wear long pants and long-sleeved shirts if the pollutants in the air are irritating your skin.
- Apply bug repellent on the healthy skin when going outside to prevent bugs bites and allergic reactions. Just make sure you use a repellant without harsh, irritant chemicals.
- Avoid temperature extremes to prevent your skin from drying out.
- When using over-the-counter or prescription medication always follow the usage directions provided by your medical specialist precisely.