Are you noticing little bumps on your arms? Some people call this "chicken skin".
It’s easy to assume it’s acne-related, but those small bumps could be keratosis pilaris, a common benign skin condition.
WHAT IS KERATOSIS PILARIS?
Dry rough patches and tiny bumps on the upper arms, thighs, cheeks, and bottom which are sometimes mistaken for pimples. The texture and appearance have led to comparisons with chicken skin, thanks to the small, scaly bumps that appear on people’s arms and thighs. The good news these bumps usually don’t hurt or itch. KP can appear at any age, but is more common in children and young adults.
WHAT CAUSES KERATOSIS PILARIS? It is caused by the buildup of keratin, a hard protein that protects skin. KP is a genetic skin condition that is inherited as a dominant gene so more than likely mom or dad have this. If you have KP you may have have allergies or a history of asthma or eczema as a child.
HOW CAN YOU MANAGE KERATOSIS PILARIS?
Because KP is related to dry skin, moisturizing regularly to help hydrate the skin and make bumps appear more smooth. Look for a moisturizer formulated with lanolin, lactic acid, or ceramides and apply while skin is moist from bathing to help trap more moisture on skin’s surface. Prescriptions from your board certified dermatologist in addition to a regular moisturizer, you can use products that help remove dead skin cells from skin’s surface and those that help prevent plugged follicles. The former are creams formulated with AHAs, salicylic acid, or urea, while the latter are creams that are derived from vitamin A, topical retinoids.
Bathe in Lukewarm Water.
Hot water can actually dry skin out further. To avoid that, shorten your bath time and use water that’s medium temperature. Avoid manual exfoliation
You can not scrub KP away and can irritate the skin. Choose gentle cleansers
Harsh soaps can zap natural oils that your skin needs, making it all the more important to choose soaps formulated for sensitive or dry skin. WHAT SHOULD YOU KEEP IN MIND WHILE ADDRESSING KERATOSIS PILARIS? Reducing the appearance of keratosis pilaris takes time.
Treatment isn’t permanent
No matter which methods you choose to treat your KP, they aren’t permanent solutions. Your skin may temporarily clear up, that when you stop targeting your keratosis pilaris, the condition can and often will return.