What Causes an Itchy Rash on the Hands and Feet?

Excessive hand washing can exacerbate rashes.
Dermatitis is a common cause of itchy rashes on the hands.
A woman applying an anti-itch cream to her hands.
An allergic reaction may cause an itchy rash on the hands and feet.
Article Details
  • Written By: Meshell Powell
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 24 August 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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The development of an itchy rash on the hands and feet can have a variety of causes, and it usually requires examination by a healthcare professional in order to determine an accurate diagnosis. Contact dermatitis and allergic dermatitis are among the most common causes of this symptom, and dyshidrotic eczema and psoriasis are other potential causes. Anyone who has specific questions or concerns about a rash should discuss it with a doctor or other medical professional.

Contact dermatitis is a leading cause of an itchy rash on the hands and feet. This skin condition causes inflammation, itching, and swelling when the skin comes into contact with certain environmental substances. The triggers can differ from person to person but often include soaps, fragrances, and household cleaning supplies. The treatment for contact dermatitis usually consists of moist compresses and over-the-counter anti-itch medications. As triggers are identified, they should be avoided as much as possible.

Allergic dermatitis is similar in many ways to contact dermatitis, although the symptoms are often more severe. It's most common among those who also suffer from nasal allergies such as hay fever, and can cause a rash on the feet, hands, and other parts of the body. The symptoms may not always respond to topical ointments or moist compresses and often require the use of prescription medications. The best treatment option for allergic dermatitis is prevention by avoiding any known triggers.

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Another potential contributing factor to an itchy rash on the hands and feet is dyshidrotic eczema. This skin condition causes intensely itchy blisters to develop on the palms of the hands or the soles of the feet. These blisters may crack and ooze before becoming dry and scaly. Excess moisture, such as that caused by intense sweating or frequent hand washing, may cause the condition to become worse. Finding the right treatment for dyshidrotic eczema can be difficult and generally requires trial and error and regular supervision by a healthcare professional.

Psoriasis is a skin condition that can sometimes cause a rash on the hands and feet. Thick, scaly red patches develop on the skin of those with psoriasis, sometimes causing significant pain or discomfort. Symptoms of psoriasis may come and go with no warning over the course of many years. Treatment may involve the use of over-the-counter and prescription medications as well as phototherapy or laser treatments.

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Discuss this Article

Rundocuri
Post 2

I have had a lot of foot rashes, and I have found that the best preventative is using an antiperspirant spray on them. It prevents excessive moisture and odor.

Talentryto
Post 1

Regardless of the causes of rashes on the hands and feet, washing them frequently goes a long way to control and prevent problems. It addition, using powder on the feet helps to control moisture that can lead to the development of rashes.

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