Have you ever looked at your hands and noticed an unnatural yellow hue? It can be a shock, and you may wonder why your hands are yellow. Thankfully, yellowing of the skin is most often harmless and can be caused by many different factors. The causes of yellow hands range from simple lifestyle choices to underlying medical conditions. Fortunately, there are treatments available that can help reduce the yellow hue and restore the natural color of your skin. In this article, we’ll explore the most common causes of yellow hands and how to treat them.
Why Are My Hands Yellow?
You may have noticed that your hands have a yellowish tint, and you’re wondering why that could be the case. The most likely explanation is that you are suffering from carotenemia, which is a condition where your body accumulates too much of a compound called carotene. Carotene is a yellow-orange pigment found in certain foods, such as carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, and papaya, and it is also found in some dietary supplements. When your body has too much of this compound, it can cause your skin to turn yellow.
What Causes Yellow Hands?
- The most common cause of yellow hands is exposure to the sun. The sun’s UV rays can cause the skin to turn yellow, especially if you are frequently exposed to the sun. To protect your hands from the sun, wear sunscreen and avoid spending too much time in the sun.
- Other causes of yellow hands include age, genetics, and medications. As you age, your skin may become less elastic and unable to tolerate sunlight. Additionally, some medications can cause your skin to turn yellow. If you are taking any medications that may cause skin discoloration, speak with your doctor about how to address the issue.
- Certain foods and drinks can also cause yellow hands. Coffee, tea, and alcohol can all contribute to a yellow hue in your hands. Be sure to drink plenty of water and avoid excessive caffeine or alcohol consumption if you want healthy-looking hands!
- Finally, some people have a rare condition called porphyria. Porphyria is a disorder that causes the skin to turn yellow and the body to produce excessive amounts of the pigment porphyrin. If you are concerned that you may have porphyria, be sure to speak with your doctor about the best way to address the issue.
Common Conditions That Cause Yellow Hands
Acne can cause yellowing of the skin, and it is one of the most common causes of skin discoloration. The lesions that form in acne often result in the release of excess oil and bacteria into the surrounding skin. This combination causes the skin to become yellow and blotchy. Acne can also cause scars on the skin, which can make it look even yellower. If you have acne, you should consult a dermatologist about treatment options.
Rosacea is a chronic skin condition that causes redness, irritation, and sometimes even blemishes on the face. Rosacea is often caused by an overproduction of oil in the skin, which leads to inflammation and pigmentation. Treatment for rosacea typically involves topical medications and/or laser therapy to reduce inflammation and pigmentation. If you are experiencing rosacea symptoms, you must see a physician for diagnosis and treatment.
Scleroderma is a rare skin condition that causes the skin to become hard and thin. The skin is often red, tender, and swollen, and it may even peel. Scleroderma can cause yellowing of the skin due to the accumulation of fluid in the tissues. Treatment for scleroderma typically involves using medications and/or surgery to reduce the amount of fluid in the skin. If you are experiencing symptoms of scleroderma, it is important to see a physician for diagnosis and treatment.
Lichen planus is a condition that causes patches of skin that are covered in a thin layer of white or gray material. Lichen planus can cause yellowing of the skin due to the deposition of melanin in the skin. Treatment for lichen planus typically involves using topical medications and/or laser therapy to remove the white or gray material from the patches of skin. If you are experiencing symptoms of lichen planus, it is important to see a physician for diagnosis and treatment.
Treatments For Yellow Hands
Drink plenty of water
Drinking plenty of water is one of the best ways to reduce the yellow hue in your hands. When you drink plenty of water, it helps flush out toxins and waste from your body. This helps to restore the natural color of your skin and reduce the yellow hue.
Smoking can cause yellowing of the skin, including in your hands. Smoking is a major cause of health problems, including yellowing of the skin, and it’s important to avoid it if you want to keep your hands healthy and looking their best.
Avoid using harsh soaps or cleaners
Harsh soaps and cleaners can strip away the natural oils from your skin, which can lead to yellowing and a loss of moisture. Instead, use mild soap or a gentle cleanser that doesn’t contain harsh chemicals.
Avoid wearing bright colors
Wearing bright colors can cause your skin to become more sensitive and susceptible to sun damage. This includes yellowing of the skin. Instead, choose neutrals or darker colors that will protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays.
Sunscreen is essential for protecting your skin from the sun’s harmful rays. Sunscreen can help reduce the yellowing of the skin, as well as the appearance of age spots and other skin problems. Make sure to apply sunscreen every day, even if you’re only going outside for a short time.
Prevention Tips For Yellow Hands
- Avoid using harsh soaps and detergents. These chemicals can damage the skin and lead to yellowing. Instead, use mild soap or water to wash your hands.
- Avoid smoking. Smoking can cause yellowing of the skin and other respiratory problems.
- Drink plenty of water. Water helps keep the skin hydrated, which can reduce the appearance of yellow hands and other skin problems.
- Apply sunscreen every day. Sunscreen protects the skin from the harmful effects of the sun’s rays, including yellowing.
- Avoid using artificial colors in your makeup or hair dye products. These colors can cause staining and discoloration of the skin, including yellowing.
When To See A Doctor
- If you notice a sudden change in the color or appearance of your hands, consult your doctor.
- If you have yellowing that is longstanding and doesn’t seem to be resolving on its own, see a doctor.
- If you have any other concerns about the color or appearance of your hands, consult your doctor.
As you can see, many things can cause yellow hands. Thankfully, most of these are easily treatable. You can prevent yellow hands by washing your hands often, avoiding contact with irritants, and wearing gloves while gardening or working with chemicals. If you notice yellowing of the palms, soles, and nail beds, you should visit your doctor to determine the cause.