Sanitizer And Dermatitis Issue | Gleneagles Hospital Kuala Lumpur

Sanitizer And Dermatitis Issue


Sanitizer And Dermatitis Issue

What is hand dermatitis?

Hand dermatitis is a common inflammatory condition of the hands characterized by an itchy, red rash; often accompanied with small blisters, peeling and cracks. It is caused mostly by direct damage to the skin from contact with various chemicals such as soap or detergent and made worse by frequent hand washing with water.


Frequently Asked Questions

  • To contain the spread of COVID-19, people are washing their hands and using hand sanitizer more frequently than they may have in the past. Will this lead to the worsening of existing skin conditions because of these measures?

Yes. Many patients have reported worsening of their existing skin conditions as a result of frequent hand washing and using hand sanitizers.


  • Is hand sanitizer effective against COVID-19?

Yes, hand sanitizer that contains alcohol of at least 60% is effective against COVID-19.


  • What should you do if you develop a rash or other reaction to hand sanitizer?

Stop using the hand sanitizer immediately. Apply emollient every time after washing hands with mild soap. Mild steroid-based cream may help to relieve the rash. In a more severe condition, it is advisable to consult a medical doctor.


  • If alcohol is added to non-alcohol hand sanitizer, will this be better to prevent COVID-19?

No, this is unlikely to result in an effective product and is not advisable.


  • Is hand sanitizer dangerous to children?

Yes, hand sanitizer is dangerous to children if it is ingested. However, there is of no concern if children eat with or lick their hands after using hand sanitizer which has dried up.


  • My friend is washing his hand more frequent than I do, but why is it that I am the one who suffered from hand dermatitis?

There could be few reasons. People who are prone to eczema are more likely to have hand dermatitis especially those who have personal or family history of atopy (atopic dermatitis, asthma, or hay fever). Using harsh soap especially those containing fragrance and colouring agents may precipitate or aggravate hand dermatitis.


  • How can hand dermatitis be prevented?

Hand dermatitis can be prevented by using protector gloves at work and at home when in contact with irritant chemicals or water. When washing hands, use products that have mild soap and free of fragrance. It is recommended to moisturize the hands with emollient after each hand wash.


  • What is the outlook for hand dermatitis?

In most cases, hand dermatitis can be controlled and managed well with appropriate protection of hands and proper use of skin care products as well as regularly moisturizing the hands. In people with allergic contact dermatitis, avoidance of the allergen(s) may help and even clear the hand dermatitis.


  • How many percent of alcohol is good for hand sanitizer?

Hand sanitizer should have at least 60% alcohol and above to be effective.


Our Specialists

Gleneagles Hospital Kuala Lumpur
Ambulance / Emergency
+603 4141 3018
Select a hospital