Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, MD, FFARCSI

Keratosis pilaris is a skin condition which is characterized by numerous, small, rough, red bumps around the hair follicles. It is mostly seen occurring on the upper arm, legs, thigh, buttocks, and sometimes on the cheeks. There are various questions related to this condition, like what triggers keratosis pilaris? Is it permanent or how long does keratosis pilaris last? This article aims to answer these questions and spread more awareness regarding keratosis pilaris.

What Triggers Keratosis Pilaris?

Keratosis pilaris is caused by the protein build up, which clogs the follicles and leads to the formation of bumps on the skin surface. This skin condition might be displeasing to look at but is totally harmless. Except for slight itching, no other symptom is shown by the person suffering from this keratosis pilaris. The skin might become red if the bumps are irritated.

So, let us look at what triggers keratosis pilaris? Thought the exact triggers of keratosis pilaris are unknown, but the condition is most commonly found occurring in the following people.

  • The infection is more common in children and adolescent, but many adults are also seen suffering from it.
  • Women are more commonly found getting keratosis pilaris than men.
  • It is also common in patients suffering from certain other skin conditions such as atopic dermatitis.
  • People having dry skin are also easy sufferers of keratosis pilaris.
  • The condition worsens in the winter months when the weather is very dry.

How Long Does Keratosis Pilaris Last?

Keratosis pilaris is not a permanent condition. It fades away over time but the time period is different for person to person. So, how long does keratosis pilaris last, varies and depends on several factors. Many people observe this skin condition to improve over the summer season, while others may find the condition to worsen at this time.

There are certain treatments which may help the skin to look and feel better. These may help keratosis pilaris resolve earlier and in a healthier way for some people.

  • Using certain exfoliant creams or mild scrubs which can remove the dead skin, and make it feel softer.
  • Using thick moisturizer can also be of great help.
  • Soap-free cleansers can be used to clean the skin without causing any dryness. Some people find it beneficial to use moisturizing gels and cleansers for bathing, as they prevent dryness and help to keep the skin hydrated and moisturized.
  • Using warm water to bathe instead of hot water in the winters can reduce the dryness caused in winter months.
  • Topical retinoid creams are helpful, as they help in preventing the follicles from getting plugged. Products containing salicylic acid, alpha-hydroxy acids, and lactic acids can help by reducing the bumps.
  • Laser treatments are an option when creams and exfoliants are not providing sufficient relief.

There are various alternative treatments which provide relief from keratosis pilaris but should be taken under an expert’s guidance.

Home remedies such as oatmeal scrub, coconut oil, honey, tea tree oil, and aloe vera are few remedies, which give us relief without fear of any side effect. Many of these are easy to use remedies and are readily available at home.

Keratosis pilaris may fade over time without any treatment. As the time period for which keratosis pilaris lasts varies from person to person, taking treatments may help in some cases. Some treatments may lessen the impact, but the condition might return. Though there are not many treatments which can boast about the cure of the disease but the above treatments options can help improve the condition of the skin and giving relief from the symptoms presented during the occurrence of this condition.

However, knowing what triggers keratosis pilaris helps to avoid the trigger factors and take necessary steps to protect the skin. Also, knowing that it is not a permanent condition offers some relief and as how long keratosis pilaris lasts differs from person to person, taking the best possible treatment is the best way out.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: February 19, 2019

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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