Allergic Contact DermatitisDas allergische KontaktekzemLa dermite de contact allergiqueAllergisk kontakteksemAlergijski kontaktni ekcemHet allergische contacteczeemAllergic Contact Dermatitis print as pdf

The allergic contact dermatitis (ACD)

Here the immune system develops an oversensitivity to certain allergens, e.g. hair colouring agents, preservatives or perfumes. In this case even a single skin contact can produce an allergic reaction.   

For this reason: Protect yourself! Only an intact skin barrier offers reliable protection from an allergy! 

 

Inflammation in response to allergic contact eczema

 

This is how an allergy develops

Phase 1 - Sensitization (armament and recruiting): an allergen, for example PPD (phenylenediamine) from hair colouring agents, infiltrates the skin. The “Langerhans guard” assumes that in PPD it is dealing with a very dangerous substance. At that point the professional aid is categorized as a so-called “antigen”, which must be fought against with heavy weaponry, and an immunological memory is created against it.  

The “Langerhans guard” brings one or more invaders to a supervision- and recruiting station of the immune system (lymph node). Then a special unit is formed, the so-called “antibody”. The phase in which your body arms itself against an allergen is called the “sensitization phase”.

Penetration of allergens through the damaged skin barrier
The defensive cell starts the immunological response

Phase 2: As soon as the army of resistance cells and an immunological memory are formed, even  small amounts of the allergen are sufficient to provoke an immune system response and thus produce an allergy-related inflammation of the skin.    

Allergic inflammation reaction

 

Did you know that an Allergic Contact Dermatitis does not appear until 1 to 3 days after the allergenic contact? 

That is because allergens must first be recognized before the formation of the defensive cells can follow. It can take up to three days to build a “hard-hitting army”. Skin allergies are therefore referred to as “delayed-type allergies”.   

Is an allergy curable? 

No, unfortunately not. Once contracted, an allergy is not curable and thus exists for the rest of one’s life! In contrast to an allergy of the mucous membranes (Type I; for example, to pollen), skin allergies to professional products like hairdressing chemicals are not susceptible to “desensitization”therapy.