Keratosis pilaris

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Keratosis pilaris is a harmless condition of the skin that leads to the development of dry, coarse patches and miniature bumps that usually develop on the upper arms and thighs as well as the cheeks or buttocks. The lumps do not cause pain or itchiness.

This skin condition usually disappears at the age of 30 years old. Keratosis pilaris develops when there is excess keratin protein found in the skin that clogs the follicles of hair and result to the formation of bumps which makes the skin feels like similar to sandpaper in texture and appears like goose flesh. Keratosis pilaris can be inherited and also can be caused by eczema and other conditions such as dry skin and usually becomes severe during winter months.

Symptoms

  • Keratosis pilaris can happen at any age but children are more susceptible to this condition.
  • The skin becomes dry and rough in areas with bumps
  • The small bumps that develops on the upper arms, thigh, buttocks and cheeks are usually painless
  • The skin becomes drier with seasonal changes due to low humidity
  • Sandpaper-like bumps that appears like goose flesh
    Keratosis pilaris

    The small bumps that develops on the upper arms, thigh, buttocks and cheeks are usually painless

Causes

Keratosis pelaris is due to accumulation of keratin which is a hard protein that helps protect the skin from harmful substances and infections. The keratin develops a scaly plug that cause blockage of the opening of follicles of hair. Usually many plugs form and result to rough patches and bumpy skin. The accumulation of keratin is due to genetic disease or other skin conditions such as atopic dermatitis. Having dry skin makes the condition worse.

Treatment

  • In a bathtub filled with warm water, mix a cup of Epsom salt until completely dissolved. Soak in this solution for at least 20 minutes and pat dry the skin. Perform this procedure several times a week. Apply moisturizer or coconut oil on the affected skin. Epsom salt is rich in minerals that can soften hard and dry skin as well as eases the itchiness, eliminate toxins and lessen inflammation and stress.
  • Using vitamin E oil helps in treating keratosis pelaris. It helps make the bumps smooth and retain moisture. It also helps in repairing the skin which is needed for the maintenance of a healthy skin. Apply vitamin E oil while the skin is still damp at least 1-2 times every day. If vitamin E is not available, puncture a vitamin E capsule and use the contents on the affected skin. In a bathtub filled with warm water, mix in a few tablespoons of vitamin E oil and then soak the body in the solution for at least 20-30 minutes at 3 times every week.
  • Take a prescribed fish oil supplement which is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids to heal the dryness and maintain healthy skin.
  • Oatmeal helps relax dry and itchy skin and can be scrubbed on the skin to help eliminate the accumulation of dead skin cells. Grind one third cup of oatmeal and mix it in the bath tub filled with warm water. Mix well until oatmeal is totally dissolved. Soak the body in the solution for at least 15-20 minutes at least once a week.
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  • All cprhcp.ca content is reviewed by a medical professional and / sourced to ensure as much factual accuracy as possible.

  • We have strict sourcing guidelines and only link to reputable websites, academic research institutions and medical articles.

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