Keratosis Pilaris

What is Keratosis Pilaris?

Keratosis Pilaris is an extremely common skin condition. While some people may be worried when it develops, it is harmless. It causes a wide array of symptoms that may initially be alarming, but overall, the condition causes no serious issues.

What are the Symptoms of Keratosis Pilaris?

The symptoms of keratosis pilaris are not dangerous, but they can be quite annoying.

Symptoms include

  • Tiny bumps on the upper arms, cheeks, buttocks, and thighs. These bumps are not painful.
  • Dry, rough skin in the areas where the bumps appear.
  • The bumps and dryness become worse when seasonal changes occur. This is because seasonal changes cause the air to be less humid, which makes skin dryer.

Bumps that resemble sandpaper or goose flesh.

Keratosis Pilaris Causes

Keratosis pilaris is caused by the buildup of keratin, the protein the helps protect the skin from infections and other types of harm, around the opening of hair follicles. The keratin builds up into small hard bumps that block the opening of the hair follicle. Generally there will be many of the bumps in the same area.

Doctors don’t currently know what causes this buildup to occur, though there appears to be a strong genetic component. It is also far likelier to occur in people who have dry skin. There are several other conditions that it is commonly known to be present with, including rhinitis, hay fever, asthma, atopic dermatitis, and eczema.

How is Keratosis Pilaris Treated?

Typically, keratosis pilaris clears up by itself. However, there are remedies on the market that can make your skin appear smoother and relieve the dryness in your skin.

Treatments include

Pretty much any moisturizing skin cream will aid in the appearance and feel of the skin. However, if you do not find relief from these, your dermatologist may be able to prescribe medicated ointment that will help.

Other types of cream that assist in treating this condition are, creams to remove dead skin cells and creams to prevent clogged hair follicles.

Keratosis Pilaris Prevention

Keratosis pilaris can be hard to prevent as it’s not very well understood. Most of preventing keratosis pilaris comes down to keeping the skin moisturized. There are many good ways to do this.

As with any other condition, a good diet will help. A balanced diet will provide most of the nutrients you need for your skin. Nutrients that are especially important for skin health are Omega three and six which can be found in seafood as well as flax, hemp, and nuts. Vitamin E is also very important and can be found in many nuts, eggs, leafy greens, avocados, and oatmeal. Vitamin A is also essential for skin health. The best source of vitamin A by far is liver, though it can also be found in orange vegetables such as carrots, pumpkin, and sweet potatoes.

Another tip to help keep your skin moist is to consider using a humidifier during the winter months. Often in the winter, the air becomes very dry, which in turn dries your skin out.

Soaking in an oatmeal bath is a common folk remedy for all kinds of skin ailments and may help moisturize skin. Simply add a cup of oatmeal to a warm bath and enjoy.