Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Keratosis Pilaris

I consider my older daughter's geographic tongue as more of a cosmetic problem than a health threatening condition. Well, it's not enough that she has a geographic tongue. She also has keratosis pilaris, another non-life threatening condition affecting the skin. It's another cosmetic problem to either deal with or to simply ignore.

Keratosis pilaris is a benign skin disorder characterized by rough bumps on the skin. Just like in geographic tongue, keratosis pilaris occurs in otherwise healthy persons and has no known cure. It commonly appears on the upper arms and thighs and sometimes on the face, which is true in my daughter's case. Keratosis pilaris results from a buildup of protein called keratin in the openings of hair follicles in the skin. This produces small, rough patches, usually on the arms and thighs.

I first noticed the rough bumps on my daughter's arms and thighs when she was around 4 years old. I first thought it was part of the allergic reaction she had with one of the medicine prescribed for her. But then the bumps persisted long after her other skin rashes (allergic reaction to antibiotic) subsided. Truth is I am more bothered by the goose flesh appearance than my daughter is. I'm thinking that maybe she'll be more concerned about it when she's older but at this time she's not giving much thought about it.

Keratosis pilaris, sometimes also called as chicken skin, is more common in women, can affect people of all ages and tends to improve with age. It's difficult to treat so it can be frustrating at times. The symptoms usually improve during warmer months and worsen during colder season.

In keratosis pilaris the keratin, a protein in our body, builds up within the hair follicles on the skin causing small acne-like bumps. Although it is very tempting to do so, scratching or picking on the bumps is not advisable as it could lead to scarring. Our dermatologist prescribed cleansing milk wash, AHA cream and anti-wrinkle cream for my daughter's keratosis pilaris. Her doctor jokingly said that she was his youngest patient who needs anti-wrinkle cream. She was also encouraged to eat food rich in Vitamin A which is not an easy task considering her dislike for veggies.

My daughter call her keratosis pilaris bumps as her "spots" and she usually directs my attention to them when they are very prominent. "We need to put medicine lotion on my spots," she would say referring to the creams that our doctor prescribed for her. The aim in keratosis pilaris is to prevent excessive skin dryness.

Did I say it improves with age? I did? Well, I just need to remind myself about that lest I continue to let myself be bothered by it. There's a possibility it could worsen though but I will not focus on that.


Vish..! said...

Dear If ur daughter have the same in the elbow try a lil coconut oil.. apply coconut oil in a single place like elbow, continuously for a month or so and see what happens...

I think she will be ok.. a drop or two will be ok and rub the elbow for some time (Making it mild warm and helping coconut oil to penetrate skin). May be that helps(I prefer to wipe the excess coconut oil to be removed using a blotting paper, and not soap).

And ya if the results are positive lets go ahead :)

eagerblogger said...

Thanks for that Vish. Will consider that option. :)

FOOTPRINTS (aka ourfootprints aka Annita) said...

Thanks for this informative post.

I happened to read the comment from 'Vish.' He suggested to rub coconut oil on the skin.

when we went to naturaphatic doctor, he also suggested to use coconut oil on emily's dry skin. we don't use the oil anymore as emily is in fact allergic to it :(

Have a good and restful (long) weekend .. we also do celebrate labor day this coming monday ^_^

zunnur said...

Hi eagerblogger,
Thanks for sharing this information. I personally think that our environment and the food we eat today are causing all kind of problems to us and our children.

Anonymous said...

I am 22 yrs old and I have had keratosis pilaris my whole life. Over the years it has diminished some. My legs have cleared up and now it is only my arms. I know your daughter isn't very old but you could try an exfoliating body scrub a couple of times a week. It has really helped my skin clear up. One of the problems with keratosis pilaris is that our skin doesn't realize that it is suppose to naturally exfoliate so we have to help it out. Also make sure to use lots of lotion, I like cocoa butter it is a great lotion and it smells good.

eagerblogger said...

Thanks for your suggestion. I will certainly give it a try. Maybe I'll start with just once a week. If it makes a difference then I'll stick with it. :)

Anonymous said...

My son is 16 month old and I just find out he has GT does anyone has any suggestions on what I can do for it to go away? I have psoriasis on my scalp and it looks like he got it because of me. I've tried a lot of things for my psoriasis to go away but i haven't had any luck. I am very miserable because of it and now knowing that my sos has GT because of it makes me feel even worse.
It doesn't look like it bothers him but the patches on his tongue are worse then other times.