Contact dermatitis refers to a condition where the skin becomes red and inflamed, resembling a burn, in response to contact with an irritant or an allergen. The decreased immune response associated with aging makes allergic-related dermatitis less likely.

However, you may find that you become more sensitive to irritants like fragrances. Treatment involves finding—and avoiding—the offending triggers. Common culprits include nickel, fragrances and ingredients like balsam of Peru found in some perfumes, cosmetics, lotions, toothpastes and mouthwashes.

Source: Prepared by the Editors of The Johns Hopkins Medical Letter: Health After 50

Publication Review By: the Editorial Staff at

Published: 29 Jul 2013

Last Modified: 29 Jul 2013