Will Perioral Dermatitis Heal on its Own?

So, you find out that you have a skin rash that’s called perioral dermatitis, and the first question on your mind is, “will perioral dermatitis heal on its own?”

It’s only natural not to want to go to the doctor. Not only is it expensive (if it’s not covered by your insurance), but it’s also time consuming. You could be one of a dozen of patients looking to get it checked, and between work and chores at home, you simply just don’t have enough time to have your perioral dermatitis checked by your physician.

With that said, perioral dermatitis isn’t something that will just go away on its own.

Similar in appearance to eczema, perioral dermatitis usually affects areas around the eyes, the folds of skin surrounding your nose, mouth, and even your genitals.

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It’s the sort of skin condition that experts can’t fully agree on yet on an exact cause. But the general consensus usually is the use of corticosteroid creams, which is often used to treat eczema and other skin conditions. Although useful, they’re not a cure-all. Most people also don’t use corticosteroids as prescribed, which leads to side effects such as perioral dermatitis.

How To Treat Perioral Dermatitis

The first step to treatment is diagnosis. Perioral dermatitis is most common in children, as well as women ages between 19 and 40.

If you notice that you have a scaly, red, itchy rash that appears around your mouth, nose, or around your eyes (or all three areas), go see a dermatologist as soon as possible. Although there are no tests yet to diagnose if you have perioral dermatitis, the dermatologist will make a definitive diagnosis based on how your rash appears upon examination.

The main difference between eczema and perioral dermatitis is that eczema very rarely causes a burning sensation. Perioral dermatitis also differs from acne in that it doesn’t come with heads that look like they’re ready to pop out.

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The dermatologist should be able to make a clear distinction between all three and make a proper diagnosis.

Once the diagnosis is completely, the dermatologist will likely recommend that you stop using the steroid cream as soon as possible. You’ll also be prescribed an oral antibiotic, or a topical cream, and in some cases, both.

It’s important that you listen to the dermatologist’s advice. This is because perioral dermatitis takes a long time to go away, even with proper treatment. It’ll take weeks, if not months, for all traces to go away, as the process is slow.

Once it’s gone, it’ll be gone for good for as long as you avoid potential triggers. This list includes fluoride toothpaste (mostly in children), as well as using heavy and irritating makeup. If you have a skin condition known as rosacea, you’re also more prone to having perioral dermatitis to those who don’t.

Finally, as a word of advice, try not to fret too much. If you’re already doing something about your perioral dermatitis, then that’s okay. As long as you’re following the treatment as prescribed, you have nothing to worry about. Just be thankful that you can actually afford the treatment, and try not to feel too embarassed about it.

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