Shoe Dermatitis

This form of dermatitis can be either irritant or allergic, is quite common, and is frequently complicated by secondary infections or eczema. The irritant variety is often caused by wearing shoes that are wet, poorly fitting, or that have uneven linings.

Allergic shoe dermatitis is distinguished by the symmetry of the rash; both feet are broken out in the same area. This rash usually starts at the top of the big toes, and spreads up the feet to the other toes. The most common causative agents of this dermatitis are rubber compounds, e.g., cements and glues used in shoe linings and inner soles, as well as chemicals and dyes used in the processing of leather.

Treatment is similar to that for allergic contact dermatitis in general.

Prevention of Shoe Dermatitis
Since the control of sweating often minimizes or eliminates shoe dermatitis, shoes that absorb sweat and allow air to reach the feet are preferable. Insoles, cotton socks, and drying powders, such as Zea SORB, may also be helpful in controlling sweating. Soaking the feet in strong tea (tea contains tannic acid) will decrease sweating.

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