Is it possible to be allergic to gold? Unfortunately the answer is yes. Read how to find out if you have a gold allergy and what to do ♦ ︎
Is it possible to be allergic to gold? The answer is: yes, you can be allergic to gold jewelry. Fortunately, being allergic to gold, however, is very rare, because the yellow metal is generally considered hypoallergenic, that is, a neutral material, which does not cause irritation and burning of the skin. Unless it’s alloyed with other metals, like nickel.
Read also: How to avoid nickel allergies
A possible allergy can be caused when gold is not 24 carat, i.e. 99% pure. And, in fact, it practically never happens that a jewel is 24 carat gold. Since most jewelry is 18 carat or less, this means that the gold used for the jewelry has been melted together with nickel (for the older ones), or copper or other metals. In addition to making gold less expensive, because it is less pure, the alloy with other metals makes the metal for jewelry more robust and gives a different color. Gold in nature is yellow, while jewelers often use white or pink gold. So if a gold jewel causes allergy, it is likely that the cause is actually another metal used in alloy.
Allergy, please go away
But there is, however, also the rare possibility of being allergic to gold: confirmed Dr. Thomas Liji in the specialized journal Medical Life Science. Gold is a noble metal, very balanced from a chemical point of view and, as we have said, for this reason it is generally neutral, therefore considered non-allergenic. Yet some cases of contact dermatitis due to gold have been identified. To find out if it is gold that causes allergy on the skin, use an exam that uses 0.5% sodium thiosulfate in petroleum jelly. It is a system that is also used to identify a possible allergy for dentists who use gold fillings. Among other things, sodium thiosulphate is also used for the gold extraction process in mines, as an alternative to cyanide.
But what symptoms can the noblest of metals cause? Gold allergy sufferers exhibit the symptoms of contact dermatitis, contact stomatitis, eczema and, in the case of gold teeth, oral lichen planus (a mucocutaneous disease). Those affected may find themselves with an itchy rash at different points on the body, such as the hands, ears or neck, but also around the eyes or on the eyelids. Medical studies have established that people with this rare allergy are often sensitive to nickel too.
How to do?
Unfortunately, the only way forward, it seems, is to avoid any contact with gold. After all, there are always excellent design jewels made with other metals, such as silver, platinum and even steel … Come on!. Rudy Serra