3 Tips For Managing Your Photoallergic Contact Dermatitis

Posted on: 4 January 2019


If you notice that you only have a rash or skin irritation after exposing your skin to sunlight, you may suffer from photoallergic contact dermatitis. Photoallergic contact dematitis (also referred to as photoallergic dermatitis) is a condition where your skin becomes irritated by a specific substance once you expose your skin to the sun.

The UV rays from the sun interact with ingredients in the substance to cause the irritation. Products that often cause photoallergic dermatitis include perfume, shaving cream, lotion, make up, and cleaning products.

Common symptoms of photoallergic dermatitis include reddening of the skin and swelling. Blisters or lesions may also appear in severe cases. Keep reading to learn a few tips to help you better manage your photoallergic dermatitis and prevent future flare-ups.

1. Cover Your Skin When You are Outside

When you go outside, it is important to avoid directly exposing your skin to the sun. You may prefer to wear lightweight clothing that shields your skin from the sun, or you seek the protection of an umbrella or a cabana.

Even when physically protecting yourself from the sun, make sure that you always wear sunscreen. Look for a low-irritant formula that is specifically designed for sensitive skin.

If you must use the offending substance to clean or tackle other chores, make sure that you wear gloves when handling the product. Not only does this add an additional layer of sun protection when you are working outside, but it prevents the product from coming into contact with your skin.

2. Time the Use of Potentially Irritating Products

There may be some products that you simply cannot or don't want to avoid using. If you can't rid an item from your daily routine, trying using it a different time of the day. By using the product at night, you increase the length of time between your initial application and exposure to sunlight. This may decrease the likelihood that product reacts with UV radiation.

3. See an Allergy Specialist for a Patch Test

If you aren't sure which of your skincare products is irritating your skin, or you feel like you are having a reaction to every product that you try, it is time contact an allergy specialist for a patch test. A patch test will use a small patch to apply common irritants to your skin to identify what ingredients or ingredients are causing your skin to become inflamed. Once you know what ingredients or ingredients are problematic, you can search for products that won't trigger your photoallergic dermatitis.

Contact a specialist, such as at The Regional Allergy Asthma & Immunology Center, PC, for more assistance.