What are the signs and symptoms of folliculitis?
You could have folliculitis if you notice,
- Small red bumps that develop around hair follicles (most common on the legs)
- Bumps that contain pus
- Bumps that blister or burst open
- Tender, itchy, or burning skin around these bumps
What are the types of folliculitis?
There are different forms of folliculitis. The most common type is known as razor bumps, which you may notice around the groin or face, especially in those with naturally curly hair. “Hot tub” folliculitis is a bacterial infection that is often found in hot tubs (as well as heated pools) and can lead to a red, itchy, and bumpy rash.
Bacterial folliculitis is a common form and is characterized by whitehead-like or pus-filled bumps. This is a sign of a Staph infection and should be treated by a dermatologist as soon as possible.
How is folliculitis treated?
A lot will depend on the cause; however, treatment is often necessary if the infection doesn’t go away within a few days. Bacterial infections will respond best to antibiotics while yeast infections and other fungi will require antifungal medications. Of course, there are a ton of skin conditions and infections that can cause similar symptoms, so it’s always best to see a dermatologist before trying over-the-counter remedies.
If you notice any signs of a new or worsening skin infection, it’s always a good idea to turn to your dermatologist right away for a proper evaluation and to make sure you get the appropriate treatment you need to get rid of the infection fast.
Your body is covered in sebaceous glands, which produce oil known as sebum that covers the hair and skin. If a gland’s duct becomes damaged or block, a sebaceous cyst can form (most often the result of trauma).
Sebaceous cysts are often painless, fluid-filled noncancerous bumps that most often develop on the neck, face, or back. They are not dangerous and they are typically slow growing; however, it is possible for them to grow large enough or to develop in an uncomfortable area of the body, particularly if they aren’t being monitored by a dermatologist.
It can be difficult to pinpoint the differences between a sebaceous cyst and other types of cysts, which is why it’s a good idea to turn to a dermatologist for an evaluation. Some signs that it’s a sebaceous cyst include:
- A white or yellow lump in the skin
- A lump that’s soft to the touch
- A lump that’s often painless, but may become uncomfortable
If the cyst isn’t infected then treatment is rarely required; however, depending on the size and location of the cyst, and whether it’s uncomfortable, your dermatologist may recommend surgically removing it.
While there isn’t one treatment that may work best for you (everyone’s skin responds differently to various treatments), a dermatologist can talk to you about multiple ways to improve the appearance of your acne scars. The type of treatment and the results you’ll get will depend on your skin type as well as the severity of your scarring. While no one treatment will get rid of your scars completely, these treatments below (alone or in combination with other treatment options) may provide you with the results you’ll looking for.
Wear Sunscreen Daily
It’s important that everyone apply sunscreen every day to protect their skin from the harmful effects of the sun, but this is particularly important if you have acne scars. This is a simple habit to adopt that can reduce the contrast between the scars and your skin tone.
Consider Dermal Fillers
While most people think of dermal fillers as a purely cosmetic treatment designed to plump up areas of the skin that have lost volume due to age, dermal fillers can also plump up scarred skin to reduce the appearance of indentations left by these scars. Of course, results are only temporary, so you will need to turn to your dermatologist for follow-up treatments in order to maintain results.
Get Laser Resurfacing
Another popular treatment option that a dermatologist can offer you is laser resurfacing. Laser technology has come a long way, particularly in the field of dermatology. The powerful lasers used can treat everything from sagging skin and wrinkles to hyperpigmentation. This same treatment can also reduce the appearance of acne and other superficial scars. This is a great alternative to dermabrasion, which is a better option for those with more severe acne scars as well as those with darker skin.
Another popular cosmetic treatment, microneedling helps to stimulate collagen production to keep the skin firm and supple. It may also be a simple but effective way to improve the appearance of scars. Since results are subtle, you may need to undergo several treatments to see the results you want.
If you are living with acne scars and want to speak with a dermatologist about your treatment options, then call one today to schedule a consultation.
You Have Dry Skin
If you are dealing with very dry, itchy, and flaky skin then baths can actually make dry skin worse. This means that you’ll want to find products that prevent the body’s natural oils from being stripped away. Of course, while you may want to watch the temperature on that bathwater, this doesn’t mean that you can’t still enjoy a relaxing soak in the tub. Just look for soaps and bath products that contain coconut milk, which is incredibly hydrating. Not to mention, it will make your skin smell pretty great, too!
You Have Eczema
If you have eczema then bath time might be a real challenge; however, if you haven’t tried it yet you need to look for bath products that contain colloidal oatmeal. Instead of using a bubble bath or other products that could exacerbate eczema, use a colloidal oatmeal bath soak instead. This product is great for itchy, dry, and red skin caused by eczema. It can also be ideal for those with sunburns and poison ivy rashes.
You Have Acne-Prone Skin
Acne doesn’t just appear on the face, you may also notice embarrassing breakouts on your shoulders, back, legs, or other parts of the body, too. If you are prone to breakouts, it’s important to find a product that won’t make acne worse while also removing excess oil from the skin. One option is Epsom salts.
Not only are they great for reducing inflammation but they also help to exfoliate the skin to remove the buildup of dead skin cells, which in turn prevents clogged pores. Soaps with tea tree oil, sulfur, or charcoal may also be great for keeping pores clean and removing impurities in the skin.
You Have Psoriasis
When it comes to psoriasis, gentle bath products are key! Look for body wash rather than soap, which can actually alter the pH of the skin and lead to further dryness. Instead, look for a gentle, fragrance-free body wash. You’ll also want to ease off the hot water and instead opt for lukewarm water when bathing or showering. Just like with eczema, colloidal oatmeal can also be soothing for psoriasis plaques.
If in doubt, your dermatologist is a wellspring of information to help you find the ideal products for your skin. A dermatologist will also know what ingredients and products to avoid based on the skin problems you’re facing. Ask your dermatologist today!
It Reduces Stress
Exercise is a great stress reliever, and we also know that acne and other conditions can be exacerbated by stress. Since regular physical activity combats stress, it may also improve certain skin problems such as acne and eczema. After all, our stress hormones impact how much oil the skin’s sebaceous glands produce. You may just find that your brisk morning walk helps keep you calm and collected, while also maintaining healthier-looking skin.
It Gets the Blood Flowing
We all know that blood carries vital nutrients throughout the body, so getting the heart pumping and the circulatory system moving during your next workout session will also get blood pumping faster. This increased blood flow brought on by that HIIT workout or that boxing class also improves circulation even once you’re done working out. This increased circulation could actually help repair damaged cells while promoting the development of new ones. Increased blood flow also removes toxins from the cells.
The Concerns of Exercise on the Skin
Of course, one of the biggest concerns a dermatologist might have for the health of someone’s skin is if they workout outdoors. It’s important to protect your skin from sun exposure, especially during peak hours of 10 am-4 pm, when the sun’s rays are strongest.
If you do plan to go for a run or workout outside you must look for a pH-balanced, broad-spectrum sunscreen that has at least an SPF of 30. Make sure to apply it to the face and body about 30 minutes before going outside. Since sweating can make sunscreen less effective, it’s also best to wear clothes that cover and protect your skin from the sun’s rays.
If you are dealing with skin problems such as acne, psoriasis, or rosacea and you’re looking for ways to keep these skin conditions managed while still being able to exercise, a dermatologist is one of the best specialists to turn to for answers, recommendations, and treatment options that fit your needs.
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