Perioral Dermatitis: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, Natural Remedies, Prevention

What is Perioral Dermatitis?

Perioral Dermatitis is an inflammatory condition characterized by development of rashes around the mouth. The rashes from Perioral Dermatitis may spread to the nose and may even extend up to the eyes, although the lips are spared. Perioral Dermatitis begins with scaly rashes around the border of the lips which then gradually starts to spread way from the lips. There may also be fluid discharge from the lesions along and the lesions may become red. There may be persistent itching in the area as well.

Perioral Dermatitis is seen more in females than males and can occur anywhere between the ages of 15 to 40 years. It very seldom occurs in children, but when it does, it usually is seen in children between 1 and 6 years of age. Perioral Dermatitis is a condition that is self resolving but if appropriate treatment is not given then the chances of the rashes recurring is much higher. Normally, the rashes from Perioral Dermatitis stay for as long as a month but may last longer.

What is Perioral Dermatitis?

What Causes Perioral Dermatitis?

The root cause of Perioral Dermatitis is not yet known but is believed to be caused due to excessive use of topical steroids on the skin. These topical agents either may have been prescribed to treat some condition or may be used by an individual without knowing about the side effects of it. Nasal sprays which contain corticosteroids may also lead to development of Perioral Dermatitis.

Certain cosmetic products also have a tendency to cause Perioral Dermatitis. Aside from this, certain bacterial and fungal skin infections may also cause Perioral Dermatitis. Use of fluorinated toothpaste can also lead to Perioral Dermatitis. Females who use oral contraceptives excessively may also be at risk for developing Perioral Dermatitis. Certain medical conditions like rosacea have also been shown to cause Perioral Dermatitis.

What Are The Risk Factors For Perioral Dermatitis?

Some of the risk factors for development of Perioral Dermatitis are:

Sex: Females tend to get Perioral Dermatitis more than males.

Steroid Creams: Excessive use of topical steroid creams either for cosmetic purposes or being prescribed to treat some medical condition also puts an individual ta risk for developing Perioral Dermatitis

Age: Adolescents, young adults, and middle aged people are at risk for developing Perioral Dermatitis

Autoimmune Disorders: An individual with an autoimmune disorder is at greater risk for developing Perioral Dermatitis than the normal population

Allergies: A prior history of allergies also puts an individual at risk for developing Perioral Dermatitis

What Are Some Of The Common Triggers For Perioral Dermatitis?

Some of the common triggers which need to be avoided in order to prevent Perioral Dermatitis are:

  • Using steroid creams, especially on the face
  • Application of makeup or using other cosmetic products on the affected area making the symptoms worse
  • Overexposure to sun
  • Exposure to strong winds
  • Excessive use of oral contraceptive pills

What Are The Symptoms Of Perioral Dermatitis?

During the initial phase, Perioral Dermatitis presents itself in the form of a rash surrounding the lips and just underneath the nostrils, although the lips itself are spared. These lesions appear red in color and are scaly in appearance. As the disease progresses, these lesions may have fluid or pus in them which may gradually start to ooze from the surface. The lesions may then start to itch as the condition worsens. The lesions may then spread from the mouth to the nose all the way up to the eyes in the latter stages of Perioral Dermatitis.

How is Perioral Dermatitis Diagnosed?

A visual inspection of the rashes by an experienced dermatologist is good enough to confirm a diagnosis of Perioral Dermatitis, especially if the individual is already at risk for developing this condition. In order to rule out an infection causing the symptoms, a skin culture may be performed for any bacterial or fungal infection. A skin biopsy may also be performed to rule out other underlying conditions causing the symptoms.

How Is Perioral Dermatitis Treated?

Once Perioral Dermatitis has been confirmed, the patient is recommended to stop usage of all cosmetic or topical agents on the affected area, especially if they contain steroids in them, as they can make the symptoms worse. Depending on the severity of the symptoms of perioral dermatitis, the physician will formulate a treatment plan best suited for the patient. The symptoms of Perioral Dermatitis may start to ease off themselves by stopping the topical agents and steroid creams. Some medications may also be prescribed to facilitate resolution of symptoms. Some of the medications that may be prescribed to get rid of Perioral Dermatitis are topical antibiotics like Metrogel and erythromycin, immunosuppressive creams, medications typically used for acne like adapalene, and oral antibiotics like doxycycline or minocycline in case the symptoms do not resolve with topical agents.

Natural Remedies To Get Rid of Perioral Dermatitis

While medications given by the physician are quite effective and helpful in easing off the symptoms of Perioral Dermatitis, there are some people who prefer natural remedies to medications. These natural remedies are useful and may be effective, although they may not be as potent as medications prescribed by the healthcare provider. Some of the natural remedies to get rid of Perioral Dermatitis are:

Tea Tree Oil: This is an effective natural remedy to treat Perioral Dermatitis due to its overall antiinflammatory properties and its effectiveness against infections. Tree Tea Oil can be applied topically to the affected area for a few days until the rashes start to resolve.

Vitamin Supplements: Taking vitamins A, C, and E are quite effective natural remedies to treat symptoms of Perioral Dermatitis

Zinc Supplements: Zinc supplements also have shown to be immensely efficacious in treating Perioral Dermatitis

Apple Cider Vinegar: This is also quite an effective natural remedy for treating Perioral Dermatitis. All the patient needs to do is apply it to the affected area a few times a day for a few days until the rashes start to disappear.

How To Prevent Perioral Dermatitis?

Perioral Dermatitis is a condition which is preventable by making certain lifestyle changes. Some of the ways to get rid of Perioral Dermatitis are:

  • Avoid application of any topical agent which may contain steroid on the face. In case if a physician prescribes a steroid cream for the face then it is always better to mention to the physician any history of Perioral Dermatitis.
  • Try and avoid using heavy cosmetics or skin creams. The patient can take the help of a dermatologist or skin care specialist for the best possible creams and moisturizers which can be applied despite Perioral Dermatitis.
  • Try and avoid going out in the sun for prolonged period of time so that the skin is not exposed to UV rays of the sun to prevent Perioral Dermatitis.

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