Decreased hormone levels often cause dry skin in women during and after menopause. Dryness can cause irritation, which is a common problem among postmenopausal women. Dyshidrotic eczema, a pathology of the skin characterized by dryness, redness and itching, often affects the hands but can also appear in other areas. If over-the-counter moisturizers do not work, consult your doctor.
Hormones such as estrogen, progesterone and testosterone can affect your skin. Teenagers notice that their skin becomes more oily and prone to pimples. During menopause, the opposite occurs. Hormone levels drop and the skin becomes drier and more prone to irritation, inflammation, itching and redness. Many cleaning products and other chemicals further dry the skin. Working as a stylist, baker, mechanic, or in a profession that requires frequent hand washing, increases exposure to irritating chemicals that can worsen this pathology. Over-the-counter moisturizers can also worsen dryness if they contain alcohol, which happens in many cases.
The lack of moisture in dyshidrotic eczema does not mean that your skin does not get enough water. What happens is that the water is not fixed inside because it has lost its natural barriers. Your skin has a natural "lamination" composed of lipids or fats. Hormonal changes and irritating chemicals can destroy the integrity of the skin, leaving it dry. Your skin can also suffer painful blisters as a result of intense inflammation.
Diagnosis and treatment
Your doctor can diagnose dyshidrotic eczema without any test, only by observing your skin. To help replenish lost moisture, use mild soaps and over-the-counter moisturizers without alcohol. Limit exposure to irritating chemicals to the greatest extent possible and minimize contact with water. Apply a good moisturizer immediately after contact with the agents that produce dryness. If these measures do not reach, consult your doctor. Anti-inflammatory creams can help soothe inflammation and redness. In severe cases, you may need replacement therapy to elevate hormone levels.