What does it mean when your right hand itches

What Does It Mean When Your Right Hand Itches?

Are you searching for what does it mean when your right hand itches? There may be a medical reason for your skin irritation. If the itching is combined with other symptoms like redness or swollen skin, then you could have a skin condition such as dermatitis, eczema or an allergy. This article covers common causes of itchy skin on the hands as well as treatment solutions.

What Does It Mean When Your Right Hand Itches? – Causes

There are several causes to answer the question ‘What does it mean when your right hand itches?’. If you have any of these symptoms on the skin in addition to itchy palms, you may need to consult with your doctor:

  • red, inflamed skin
  • thick, dry skin
  • silvery-white skin
  • bleeding or cracking of the skin
  • small blisters
  • leaking or bursting rashes
  • hives
  • burns or stings on the skin
what does it mean when your right hand is itching

Eczema

Eczema, also known as dermatitis, is a common condition that causes inflammation of the skin. There are many different types of eczema and symptoms can range from severe blistering to mild irritation and chapped skin. Some forms of eczema, such as dyshidrotic eczema (DE), show red, cracked or scaly skin. This can be accompanied by small, itchy, fluid-filled blisters on the hands, sides, fingers, toes and feet. Some types of eczema can be caused by seasonal allergies or stress, and the blisters can last for several weeks.

Excessive hand washing can trigger eczema. The use of a mild soap and a high-quality moisturizer after bathing can help to alleviate the symptoms of this condition. In some cases, your dermatologist may prescribe Steroid Ointments and Creams to reduce swelling and treat blisters, or they may recommend oral steroids like Prednisone.

Some of the natural oils you wash off from your hands go down the drain, and many soaps can hit sensitive skin hard. The best line of defence is to wash your hands daily with lukewarm water and a mild, unperfumed soap, then moisturize them with a thick cream or oil. In case of excessive dryness, you can apply ointments or thick moisturizers derived from petroleum jelly and cover your hands with cotton gloves at night while you sleep.

itchy right hand
Image of eczema on the elbow.

Psoriasis

Itchy hands and feet are common symptoms of psoriasis, a chronic autoimmune disease that affects over 8 million people in the United States. Psoriasis occurs when the immune system confuses skin cells with viruses or other infections and reacts by producing more skin cells. The disease is thought to be genetic, but it can be triggered also by stress, cold, hormones and infections (staphylococci and streptococci). Drugs such as lithium and beta blockers have also been linked to outbreaks of psoriasis. Pustular psoriasis occurs on the hands and feet as small white blisters or redness.

The disease is more common in women and can return several times over months or years. Inflammation of the joints is a possible side effect. Treatment of psoriasis can start with a mild topical cream and progress can include prescription drugs with phototherapy (light therapy).

In the winter months, the humidity in the outside air decreases. At the same time, the room heating extracts moisture from the room air. The cold temperatures are hard on skin and hands, and can lead to cracks, bleeding and itchiness on the skin surface.

The best defence is to include a high-quality moisturiser in your daily routine and use it every day. Applying a thick ointment, cream or lotion to your hands before they dry out is the best way to ensure that the skin remains soft and smooth.

Moisturizer should be applied immediately after washing dry hands and use a pair of cotton gloves at night to retain moisture. Using a humidifier to dry the air can also help relieve itchy skin on the hands and the rest of the body.

meaning of right hand itch
Image of psoriasis on the hand.

Allergies

Having an allergy may be the answer to your question ‘What does it mean when your right hand itches?’. An itchy palm or hand may indicate an allergic reaction to something you have touched. Symptoms can occur within hours and may include a rash, dry skin, hives, swelling, blisters, burns and stinging sensations.

Your doctor may prescribe antihistamines or corticosteroids to reduce inflammation and irritation caused by an allergic reaction. Dyshidrotic eczema can be caused by allergies to nickel, cobalt or other metals found in jewellery and other objects. An allergist can perform a patch test to determine which metals you may be allergic to.

Many household cleaners also have chemicals that can irritate the skin and trigger allergic reactions. When using these chemicals, it is important to wear protective gloves. Rubber or waterproof gloves can protect your hands against chemicals while cleaning or rinsing dishes.

allergy test
An allergist can do simple skin tests to determine if you have an allergy.

Diabetes

Itchy hands can be an early sign of diabetes, a serious illness that occurs when the body does not produce insulin. Eruptive xanthomatosis, a skin disease associated with diabetes, can cause itchy hands and feet. Other symptoms include small yellow bumps surrounded by redness. If diabetes is under control, your skin condition may improve. Sometimes the palms just itch because of something else.

diabetes
An itchy hand can be a sign of diabetes, you should check your blood sugar levels regularly.

What Does It Mean When Your Right Hand Itches? – Treatment

Treatment varies depending on the underlying cause of your itchy hand. So when you find yourself asking ‘What does it mean when your right hand itches?’, discuss with your doctor the common causes to determine a treatment solution. Below are a few immediate treatments you can try.

To alleviate the itching sensation, you can put a cold, damp cloth on the palm of your hand to cool it down for 5 to 10 minutes. An ice pack can also be effective.

Corticosteroids can reduce itching and redness in the hands in case of flare-ups. Avoid using steroid creams as these can cause thinning of the skin. Corticosteroids can be purchased over the counter or purchased without a prescription.

Wash hands with lukewarm water. Avoid too hot or too cold water. Aim to use perfume-free soap when washing your hands.

Avoid gel-based hand sanitizers because they contain a high concentration of alcohol.

Wearing protective gloves when doing housework or working with chemical detergents. A person should wear cotton gloves instead of latex gloves to prevent irritation from latex

protective gloves
Wearing the appropriate protective gloves at work or when handling chemicals at home can help prevent flare-ups.

Moisturizer can help relieve itching. Keeping moisturizers in the fridge can make the treatment more effective. Moisturizers are available in supermarkets and drugstores. The National Eczema Association lists recommended moisturizing products on its website, as well as sunscreen and household cleaners.

If itching is caused by eczema, moisturising after washing your hands is particularly important, especially if the hands feel dry. A person with hand eczema with severe irritation can also respond well to UV light therapy (also known as phototherapy).

If a person has a condition such as contact dermatitis or hand eczema, avoiding known triggers for this condition can help prevent flare-ups. Common triggers include:

  • excessive exposure to water
  • exposure to irritants (chemicals, bleach, solvents, perfumes etc)
  • exposure to certain materials (polyester and wool)
  • exposure to organic materials (onion, garlic, chrysanthemums and tulips)
  • stress hormones
  • sweating
  • wear and tear (especially friction and handling rough materials)
hand moisturiser
Using a fragrance-free moisturiser designed for dry skin after washing your hands can help with relieving itchiness.

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