Perioral dermatitis is a rare skin ailment that affects only 1% of the population. It is also called face steroid dermatitis, perioral rosacea and oral dermatitis. Many people wonder if perioral dermatitis is contagious. It is important to understand about this condition in detail and also to know its treatment, home remedies and prevention.
Is Perioral Dermatitis Contagious?
Perioral dermatitis is basically an inflammatory dermal condition that is commonly described as a rash. Before we understand if perioral dermatitis is contagious, it is important to know the symptoms. These flare-ups of rash caused due to perioral dermatitis mostly occur on the skin in the regions around the cheeks, mouth, chin, and nose. In certain cases, the skin around the eyes also gets affected by notable rash-like symptoms. Other symptoms like dermal dryness, flakiness, redness and itchiness, burning sensation and formation of tiny red lumps called papulopustules all signal towards perioral dermatitis. The unattractive appearance of these tiny, red bumps can have great impact of the sufferer’s emotional state and may give rise to irritability and depression in them.
Now, coming to the question whether perioral dermatitis is contagious? Perioral dermatitis is not contagious and does not spread through physical contact. It usually comes in various stages of severity. Although, its symptoms may seem severe, the disease itself is not life threatening. If adequate and timely treatment for perioral dermatitis is not administered to the patients, their skin can become coarse and thick with time. Thus, when symptoms start appearing, one should seek immediate medical attention and get the right diagnosis done in time.
Treatment of Perioral Dermatitis
Treatment of perioral dermatitis can generally last for one and half to three months. The duration of therapy is based on the severity of the outbreaks. The treatment of perioral dermatitis depends on the state and severity of the problem. Determining the right cure for treating perioral dermatitis can sometimes be challenging if the patient has other medical issues, like eczema, which can intervene with usual stages of the therapy. Environmental elements like strong winds, UV radiation and, skin care products and cosmetics containing harsh chemicals are believed to cause the rash-like outbreaks.
Once the doctor is able to rightly identify the causal factor, they may ask the patient to completely avoid any exposure to these harmful elements. The patient is often advised to abandon the use of any detergents, lotions, cosmetics, topical steroids and fluoride toothpaste until perioral dermatitis subsides. The doctor can also prescribe antifungal creams like clotrimazole and antibiotics like tetracycline and doxycycline to treat perioral dermatitis. These medications however, come with many side effects and thus should be used under medical supervision only.
Home Remedies for Perioral Dermatitis
While perioral dermatitis is treated with medical advice, traditional treatments have also proven useful in a safe manner. The following home remedies can be used along with medical treatments to help address this skin issue effectively. If you know the home remedies for perioral dermatitis, it can be easy to manage the condition.
Here are some of the most popular home remedies for perioral dermatitis.
Calendula – Calendula plant is known for its powerful antiseptic, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, which is one of the most effective home remedies for perioral dermatitis. Mixing a few drops of calendula essential oil in 1 ounce of pure shea butter and using this ointment on the affected area can help relieve perioral dermatitis easily.
Manuka Honey – Hailed as one of the best natural skin care products, Manuka honey displays excellent antioxidant, antibacterial and skin nourishing properties making a wonderful home remedy for perioral dermatitis. Washing the face with lukewarm water, applying 1 teaspoon of raw organic Manuka honey on the affected area on the wet face and then massaging it for a minute before rinsing with water is the easiest way in which one can use this honey to relieve this skin issue.
Aloe Vera Gel – Aloe vera gel can help to alleviate the dermal redness, burning and itchiness and also soothe the disturbed skin tissue in perioral dermatitis patients. Aloe vera, with its potent anti-inflammatory properties is a known home remedy for perioral dermatitis. By applying a cool gel, made by combining 5 drops each of lavender and tea tree essential oils in 2 ounces of pure aloe vera gel, on the face twice a day one can relieve these skin problems effectively.
Prevention of Perioral Dermatitis
As perioral dermatitis is not contagious, it can be prevented with personal skin care and a healthy lifestyle. One can work towards prevention of perioral dermatitis by making the following lifestyle, dietary and skin care changes. Some dietary changes and skin care tips can relieve perioral dermatitis by:
- Consuming a diet rich in folic acid and vitamins A, B6 and C and containing more of foods like citrus fruits, peas, beans, avocados, asparagus and spinach etc. The patients should however limit their intake of sour, salty and spicy foods, as a part of prevention of perioral dermatitis. It is also important to drink plenty of water to keep the skin hydrated and healthy.
- Avoiding the use of skin products containing sodium lauryl sulfate, paraffin, cinnamon flavorings and Isopropyl myristate.
- Practicing a gentle skin care regime is also important for prevention of perioral dermatitis. For example, after washing the face, one should pat it dry rather than wiping it with a towel. One should apply doctor recommended natural cooling products and moisturizing creams on the skin.
- Applying sunscreen containing at least 30 SPF on the skin helps to protect it from harmful effects of the sun, UV exposure and strong winds. This can help in prevention of perioral dermatitis. In case perioral dermatitis sufferers find their dermal situation becoming worse, they should use a milder, natural sun protection alternative or seek medical advice.
Perioral dermatitis can affect anyone, regardless of age and gender; it is not contagious. The accurate reason is not known, however, some causal factors of perioral dermatitis have been identified. Effective treatments and home remedies for perioral dermatitis help in many cases. Appropriate changes in diet and lifestyle can help in prevention of perioral dermatitis.