I got a phone call from the school nurse on Monday. I needed to come and pick Hayleigh up because she had a rash that they thought the doctor needed to look at. So, I had to go in and pick her up and called the doctor to make an appointment once we got home. That was a little around 11 or a little before. We were able to get in at 2.
So, we get in there and the doctor even seems to be unsure about what it is. It looks like what is on the back of her arms. Which has been there pretty much since she was born. And I have had the same thing since I was born from what my mom said. And now I finally have a name for it. I don’t think her doctor has ever actually said what it was before. Just always said it wasn’t a big deal, just rough skin. So, of course, once I had a name for it, I had to go look it up.
Keratosis Pilaris. And from what I read, it really is not a big deal. According to mayoclinic.com, keratosis pilaris is a “common skin condition that causes rough patches and small, acne-like bumps, usually on the arms, thighs and buttocks. Keratosis pilaris bumps are usually white, sometimes red, and generally don’t hurt or itch.” Some of the symptoms are: small acne-like bumps, painless skin colored bumps that can, at times, be red and inflamed, dry rough patches, and in some cases, itchiness.
This usually starts in childhood but can occur at any age. And everything I am reading says it usually gets better during the summer and worse in the winter. Of course, my daughter and I just have to be different, right? For both of us, it seems to get worse during the summer months. And when it flares up during these months, it does itch. Most of the time it’s not even noticeable though.
So, what does cause our skin to do this? Once again from Mayoclinic.com, “Keratosis pilaris results from the buildup of keratin — a hard protein that protects your skin from harmful substances and infection. The keratin forms a scaly plug that blocks the opening of the hair follicle. Usually many plugs form, causing patches of rough, bumpy skin. ” It’s unknown why this keratin builds up but dry skin seems to worsen the condition.
There are some things you can do, like topical exfoliants and topical corticosteroids, to make the condition better, but nothing to make it go away. And the treatments there are, you would have to continue every day or it will come back(if it goes away at all), although it does sometimes resolve with age. One thing I read said it sometimes goes away by the age of 30. So, then I would only have another 2.5 years to go. So, it really is something you just have to live with, although moisturizers such as Eucerin or cetaphil can help too.
Anyway, the doctor really did not think this new rash was related to this issue. Even though it looked like it, she said it’s in the wrong places to be it. She thinks it might be contact dermatitis, so just a reaction to something she came into contact with, maybe from playing outside. So, she gave her prescriptions for a steroid cream and an antihistamine to hopefully stop the cycle of itching, as well as some samples of Aquaphor to put over the steroid cream. Even by Tuesday it looked a little better, and we did not get another call from the nurse’s office.