Burning sensation of hands

Medically Reviewed By : Dr Sravya, MBBS, MS 


Burning Sensation, there are many reasons why you feel like that and it might be a symptoms of some other disease or complications. Have you ever felt like your hands are on fire? Like a burning sensation or a sudden feeling of electric shock on your hands like a super hero?
If you are experiencing a burning sensation on your hands. You are probably wondering why this is happening and would want to know more about it in order to stop the pain. Let’s find out together.

burning sensation of hands
In This Article

What causes the burning sensation of hands and how do you treat it?

There are a variety of reasons that can lead to a burning sensation not only in your hands but various parts of your body.

Here are a few reasons why you feel like your hands are burning:

1. Sunburn :

Long exposure to the sun without using any UV protection will eventually lead to a sunburn  sting.

When we come across the term ‘sunburn’ we often think of hot, painful skin on our face, arms, shoulders and also blisters in severe cases.

But one area that often doesn’t come to our mind is our hands. Most of us rule out this possibility because we don’t apply sunscreen on our hands so often. We use them throughout the day and we might even rub off the sunscreen unconsciously.

This is where we neglect and this negligence will lead to redness and burning sensation in our hands.

So, don’t forget to apply sunscreen on your hands and if you’ve been exposed to the sun for so long and feel burning and redness all over the body, just apply some aloevera and allow your skin to cool off.

If the redness or burning sensation still persists after a few days, then consult your doctor and seek medical attention.

2. Trauma or crush injury:

When your fingertip or nail gets crush in a door or in an accident, the tiny nerve endings get damage to the point where you feel like it’s burning at the fingertips.

3. Got bitten or stung by an insect:

Have you ever been bitten or stung by an insect and assume it was just an insect bite & nothing would happen? If that’s how you think, you’re mistaken.

Getting stung by an insect is not just painful at the moment but it may lead to some serious side effects. But different insects cause different reactions and not everyone reacts the same way.

There might be swelling, bumps or fever and sometimes you can even have a puncture mark on your skin from where the swelling is coming from, your burning hands could be the consequence of an insect bite or sting. In some cases, these symptoms may lead to serious complications.

So, whenever you have an itching, swelling or burning on the skin, apply some anti-itch cream at home but if the symptoms still persist, consult your doctor for treatment immediately.

4. Drug reaction:

If you’ve switched to another medication or begun a new drug regimen and feel a burning sensation in your hands or somewhere else like fingers, cheeks and lips, then you are probably having a reaction to the drug.

Apart from a burning sensation, they may also cause itching, rashes, dizziness and weakness of the muscle in your hands.
Always check for interactions between the new drug and the current medications to avoid such problems.

5. Coming in contact with plant species:

Have you ever felt itchy, burning, tingling or experience any little bumps or rashes on your skin when you went trekking in the forest or in the mountains?

Well… that’s because you interact with various plant species in the forest or mountains, few of them may irritate your skin which can cause rashes, itching or burning on the hands, arms, back and legs.

This does not happen only in the forest or mountains, but when you come in contact with a few plant species, they may cause reactions like these.

An anti-itch cream may help you relieve the symptoms and contact your doctor if they continue even after several days.

6. Allergies:

This is one of the main culprits which is responsible for burning your hands or fingers.

You may have allergies for various reasons and they may include:

And because your hands frequently come in contact with these items, they are most likely to suffer a reaction. Apart from a burning sensation, they may also cause itching, rashes, redness, etc.

So, whenever you come in contact with new household products or bathroom accessories and you notice a burning sensation on your hands, ask yourself whether that would be the cause.

7. Eczema:

For those who are wondering what eczema is, it’s a skin condition that causes red, itchy patches which can be painful and also difficult to treat.

Eczema is also referred to as atopic dermatitis, begins initially in one area which is heavily affect, like your hands and likely to spread to other parts of the body such as your ankles, knees, wrist, chest, neck and eyelids.

The redness appears like patches and there will be a burning sensation on your hands. Apart from these reactions, there might be itching, and dry skin and a few people may experience little bumps which leak fluid when scratched.

Avoid things that irritate your skin like harsh soaps, moisturize your skin regularly, and use medicated ointments and creams which are proven to help.

8. Palmar Erythema:

Palmar Erythema is a rare skin condition which causes a burning sensation in your hands (palms & fingers)  along with red, splotchy (dotted) spots.

There’s no known cause for some cases of Palmar Erythema and few may be inherited.

Therefore, some other causes include:

If there’s no known cause or it’s inherited, then it is difficult to treat. But, if the doctors are able to identify the underlying cause, they may be able to treat the disease by treating the underlying cause initially.

9. Peripheral neuropathy:

This condition is characterized by nerve dysfunction due to nerve damage from an underlying condition.

Therefore, some common underlying conditions may include:

One of the major symptoms of neuropathy is warmth or burning hands. Other symptoms may include:

Treatment usually focuses on the underlying cause and you can manage your symptoms with:

10. Fibromyalgia:

It’s a skeletal condition that causes pain throughout the body and also causes fatigue and mood swings. In some cases, people experience a burning sensation in their hands and feet.

Other symptoms may include:

Doctors find it somewhat hard to diagnose fibromyalgia. You may have it if you have chronic and widespread pain throughout the body for more than 3 months without any known cause. It can be genetic too.

Treatment options include:

11. Erythromelalgia:

Erythromelalgia is a rare condition which may cause warmth or painful and intense burning sensation in your hands. Other symptoms may include:

Erythromelalgia is difficult to diagnose as doctors aren’t sure about what causes it in most of the cases and hence, there are limited treatment options. It rarely passes onto the next generation.

However, pain and burning of erythromelalgia can be managed by cooling techniques, like dipping your hands in cold water. Other techniques may include:

12. Carpal tunnel syndrome:

It’s a painful condition which affects your hands and arms. It’s caused by overuse and it begins from slight tingling in your fingers to severe pain in your arm, wrist and hand. In some cases, it can cause warmth or a burning sensation in your hands.

Anyone can develop this disease but, most commonly occurs in individuals who do repetitive actions at work, like musicians or those who use power tools.

Other symptoms include:

If you develop pain in your hands after long exposure to working or spending time at a computer using a mouse, this may indicate that you’ve developed carpal tunnel syndrome.

Treatment depends on the severity of the pain and those include:


You don’t have to worry every time you have burning hands, having them occasionally is not a problem. It becomes a problem when the symptom still persists even after several days. It’s best to contact your doctor if the warmth or burning sensation persists for a longer time because it might be due to an underlying cause and should be treated immediately.

The treatment depends on the underlying cause of burning hands and so you should seek medical attention as soon as possible to avoid further complications.