der·​ma·​ti·​tis | \ ˌdər-mə-ˈtī-təs How to pronounce dermatitis (audio) \
plural dermatitides\ ˌdər-​mə-​ˈti-​tə-​ˌdēz How to pronounce dermatitis (audio) \ or dermatitises

Definition of dermatitis

: inflammation of the skin

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Dermatitis usually appears as a rash, and may cause itching, blisters, swelling, and often scabbing and scaling. It often marks an allergic reaction of some kind. Contact dermatitis is caused by something (often a chemical) touching the skin. Atopic dermatitis usually affects the insides of the elbows, the backs of the knees, and the face; generally resulting from an inherited sensitivity, it's often triggered by inhaling something. Eczema, psoriasis, and dandruff are all forms of dermatitis. Even in the worst cases, dermatitis isn't infectious and doesn't produce serious health consequences.

Examples of dermatitis in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Adverse reactions weren’t common: 0.2% of the people treated with Vivjoa reported allergic dermatitis (an allergic reaction that results in an uncomfortable skin rash) and less than 2% experienced headache and nausea. Serena Coady, SELF, 18 May 2022 Parabens are known to cause dermatitis and irritant reactions in some people. Grooming Playbook, The Salt Lake Tribune, 6 Apr. 2022 Kids who develop nummular eczema often have contact dermatitis first, most often due to nickel allergies, Nanette Silverberg, MD, a clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai in New York City, tells SELF. Stephanie Watson, SELF, 8 Apr. 2022 Many people suffer from contact dermatitis, or skin irritation and rashes, as a result of contact with sulfates. Grooming Playbook, The Salt Lake Tribune, 7 Apr. 2022 Some user reviews have said that silk pillowcases helped reduce lesions and lessen inflammations such as acne and dermatitis, and many advertisements tout silk’s antimicrobial and hypoallergenic properties. Washington Post, 6 Apr. 2021 To study the issue more closely, a team of researchers from the Salk Institute, Gladstone Institutes, and the University of California, San Francisco, zeroed in on atopic dermatitis. Jonathan Wosen, STAT, 4 Apr. 2022 Repetitive use of hydrogen peroxide on the skin can lead to irritant contact dermatitis, which occurs when the skin becomes inflamed with rashes and itching, according to the Mayo Clinic. Sudiksha Kochi, USA TODAY, 5 Feb. 2022 For another thing, the fragrances and other ingredients in chemical cleaners can cause skin irritation or contact dermatitis in some people. Washington Post, 13 Oct. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dermatitis.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of dermatitis

1876, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for dermatitis

Time Traveler

The first known use of dermatitis was in 1876

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Statistics for dermatitis

Last Updated

21 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Dermatitis.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for dermatitis


der·​ma·​ti·​tis | \ ˌdər-mə-ˈtīt-əs How to pronounce dermatitis (audio) \
plural dermatitises or dermatitides\ -​ˈtit-​ə-​ˌdēz How to pronounce dermatitis (audio) \

Medical Definition of dermatitis

: inflammation of the skin

called also dermitis

Other Words from dermatitis

dermatitic \ -​ˈtit-​ik How to pronounce dermatitis (audio) \ adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on dermatitis

Nglish: Translation of dermatitis for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about dermatitis


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