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Left Hand Itching? Itchy Palms

by | Jul 3, 2020 | Blog

We all know a good superstitious phrase or belief. From breaking mirrors to avoiding cracks in the sidewalk. One that we particularly enjoy is the supposedly luck-bringing ‘left hand itching’. We like this one here at First Derm since its skin related!

The phrase usually means you’re going to come into some money. They say ‘left to receive, right to give’. Although your left hand itching could be a sign of good fortune. Unfortunately, its more likely to be caused by a skin condition.

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My Left Hand is Itching – What is the cause?

It could be your left hand, it could be your right. Either way, itchy palms can be caused by many reasons let’s take a look here.


Hand Eczema

Left Hand is Itching

Possibly the most common. It is estimated that 10% of the people in the United states have hand eczema. You’re likely to be familiar with Eczema already, but this is a non-contagious condition that can cause itching palms, red skin, cracking and dryness.

There are many variations of eczema, from atopic and contact eczema, through to seborrhoeic eczema (dandruff) each have slightly different causes and effects.

The causes can vary but sometimes your profession can play its part such as:

  • Caterers
  • Cleaners
  • Hairdressers
  • Health Care Workers
  • Mechanics

In all of these professions, frequent hand washing is required. This can dry out the skin. At the moment we are also required to wash our hands frequently and use hand sanitizer. This can cause skin dryness.

Treating your hand eczema requires consistent moisturizing, try to protect your hands from the elements too by wearing gloves where possible.

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Allergic Reactions

If you notice your left hand itching in the non-superstitious way, it could be cause an allergic reaction. This is another common cause and a reaction will usually appear within 48 to 96 hours of contact with an allergen.

Some of the most common irritants:

  • Metal rings and jewelry
  • Latex Gloves
  • Perfume
  • Soap
  • Disinfectant

Highly chlorinated water can also play its part too. It’s worth remembering that it might not be an immediate reaction, but something that occurs after repeated exposure.

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Itchy Palms – Other Causes

Outside of the typical skin reactions and hand eczema there could be other reasons for your left hand itching.

Diabetes – If your blood sugar levels are too high this can cause dry and itchy skin. It can even appear with red or flesh colored bumps on the palms of your hands.

Medication Reaction – A reaction to any new medication could be the cause. The body reacts by producing histamine and this causes you to itch. These histamines tend to collect in higher numbers in the hands and the feet. Usually this is a form of urticaria.

Cirrhosis – This is an autoimmune disorder that can cause itchy, blotchy palms. It affects the bile ducts that connect the liver to the stomach. From this you may see blotchy and itchy palms. 

Nerve Disorders – A nerve disorder, perhaps as a result of diabetes can cause itchy palms. Carpal tunnel syndrome can also cause your left hand to itch although it is usually most common in the hand you use more frequently.

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Regardless of the cause of that left hand itching. There are various treatments available. A cool damp cloth placed on your hands for 5 minutes can help relieve the itching but there are some longer term alternatives.

Topical Steroids – Corticosteroids usually reduce the itching and redness of the palms when they flare up. You can usually buy these over the counter but speak to our dermatologists about it first.

Moisturize – We see this as the most important one. Find a moisturizer that suits your skin – this can be achieved through trial and error and testing on your skin. Apply the moisturizer frequently, especially after washing your hands, using detergent and/or hand sanitizer.

In all, your left hand itching is usually a sign of something that is treatable. Protecting your skin with gloves and moisturizing will resolve most cases. If you are concerned about your dry skin then speak to our dermatologists for immediate relief.

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