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What is Dermatitis? Symptoms, Causes, Treatments

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Dermatitis is often referred to as types of eczemas or rashes, with some associated with genetics and others from certain lifestyle factors, with many of them linked to allergies. Most of these conditions are treated with topical corticosteroids along with continual skin moisturizing. Here is a list of the more common dermatitis types.

1. Atopic Dermatitis

More commonly known as eczema, there are still a host of unknown facts that still need to be discovered about this commonly observed form of dermatitis.


None of the eczemas are regarded as the same. However, all types share specific core symptoms that include:

• Skin dryness

• Even though not regarded as contagious the eczema often spreads across the skin


Precise causes associated with atopic dermatitis remain unknown, but it is usually a mixture of environmental triggers and genetics.

2. Seborrheic Dermatitis

This dermatitis is also associated with many names, but the most common is basically dandruff. The medical professionals sometimes refer to this condition as seborrhea, cradle-cap, pityriasis capitis, sebopsoriasis and seborrheic eczema. This is classified as a type of inflammatory disorder associated with the skin, with mainly mild manifestations.


This condition is linked to causing scaly skin and often appears as a type of allergy, along with eczema and psoriasis. Even though seborrheic dermatitis is different in the way it manifests, some symptoms are the most common in the majority of cases:

• In most cases, seborrheic dermatitis will appear on the area of the scalp

• It is easy to misdiagnose seborrheic dermatitis for another disorder like a common type of allergy


Similar to eczema, it is still not known what causes this dermatitis type. It could be associated with various factors or a combination of them, which more commonly includes:

• Cold or dry climates

• Hereditary factors

• A type of yeast-like bacteria that is present on the scalp or skin

• This condition is the most common in adults between the ages of 30 to 60 and newborn babies

3. Contact Dermatitis

This form of dermatitis involves the person touching something and the skin immediately turns red and becomes tender, often accompanied by discomfort or pain.


As you will find below there are a few differences between the 2 main types associated with dermatitis. However, both types are similar in the way they manifest in the following way:

  • The skin becomes red and may develop blisters, along with becoming inflamed and raised
  • The blisters are either dry or ooze
  • The skin may become darker and turn leathery or develop sores
  • The person might experience itchiness when it comes to a type of allergy or pain for the rashes caused by an irritant
  • For the irritant type contact dermatitis, it is usually accompanied by cracking or swelling skin, stiff or tightened skin along with open sores that are caused from the skin crusts


There are 2 main causes associated with contact dermatitis that include:

• When it comes to any type of allergic reaction, coming into direct contact with certain substances will make the body think it is under an attack. This triggers immune responses that generate antibodies. Histamine is produced which is what causes the skin to become itchy.

• The second cause is associated with damaged skin and is known as a type of irritant-contact dermatitis. This may appear similar to a type of allergy, but this rash type is caused from damages to the actual skin which has removed the protective oils.

4. Perioral Dermatitis

This type of dermatitis is a typical rash that will develop around the area of the mouth. It is more commonly seen in younger women, who happen to make-up around 90% of the sufferers. However, men can also experience this condition.


Perioral dermatitis forms a portion of a family that is associated with similar conditions, but each has its own named associated with the areas where the blisters or papules emerge. The names include:

  • Perioral dermatitis, that will only emerge on the lower-half of the person’s face, particularly around the area of the mouth
  • Periorificial dermatitis, that appear around the orifices of the face which includes the mouth, nostrils, eyes and even the genital areas
  • Periocular dermatitis, will appear mainly on the area of the eyelids and around each eye

This rash can in some cases spread to other areas like the forehead or nose and is typically linked to burning sensations. The more common symptoms include:

  • Blisters that erupt on the upper-lip, chin and even the eyelids
  • The skin becomes sparred around the area of the lips
  • Blister clusters of around 1 to 2mm in diameter
  • Dry and flaky skin


Medical science has not yet established the causes related to perioral dermatitis, but specific correlations are linked with immune-system reactions, skin damage, changes that occur with the microflora of the skin, bacteria found in the actual follicles and interactions linked to specific substances.

Final Thoughts

Dermatitis may seem scary, but it can actually be quite treatable if you get on top of things right away.

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