Contact Dermatitis - Frequently Asked Questions

Dr. Lakshmi Venkataraman
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Lakshmi Venkataraman, MD
Last Updated on Sep 18, 2017
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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Which doctor should I consult for contact dermatitis?

A General Practitioner (GP) must be first consulted, with description of symptoms and the substances with which there has been constant contact. The GP may then refer to a skin specialist, a dermatologist, who will identify the cause of reaction and advise on the treatment and lifestyle changes, if required.

2. Can contact dermatitis be contagious?

Contact dermatitis cannot spread from one person to another.

3. How do you cure dermatitis?

The most important cure for dermatitis is to avoid contact with the allergen or irritant which is causing it. In addition, symptoms like inflammation and dryness may need to be treated with medications to soothe the condition.

4. Is sebaceous dermatitis (dermatitis in the scalp) contagious?

Sebaceous dermatitis is not contagious.

5. Is contact dermatitis hereditary?

There is a tendency for dermatitis to run in families.

6. How long does it take for contact dermatitis to heal?

In case of allergic reactions, the symptoms could reduce within a few hours or a maximum of 1-2 days. However, in case of allergic reactions to plants like poison ivy, healing may take 6-8 weeks.

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