Common Kid Skin Problems & When To Worry
Our skin is our biggest organ. So when there is something wrong in our body, our skin will be one of the first signs of distress. This is especially important with children, particularly when they’re too young to communicate. Rather than going into panicked parent mode over every blemish, know what to look for and when to seek help.
Eczema: One of the most common child skin ailments is eczema. This often inflicts infants and toddlers who have weaker immune systems. Characteristics include itchy, flaky patches of skin, often appearing on the face. Sometimes this can occur due to a change in diet, commonly caused by dairy, and may be influenced by the mother’s diet if she is breastfeeding. Try changing their diet and applying topical lotions and ointments. If the problem persists, consult your doctor.
Freckles & Sunburn: Fair-skinned children are extremely sensitive to sunlight and tend to burn and freckle easily. With that said, anyone is capable of having freckles and burning, so everyone (parents included) should wear sunscreen. People who experience excessive and repetitive sunburns are more susceptible to skin cancer. Even if completely treated, you are more likely to suffer from skin cancer on multiple occasions once you have had it, so be sure to wear broad spectrum sunscreen any time you will spend prolonged periods of time outdoors. Don’t forget to reapply at least every two hours, or every hour if you’re in water. Cloudy days are just as likely to cause damage.
Mole: Moles are caused by a cluster of melanin and are usually genetic. Typically, they’re only problematic if the mole is raised and rubbing against clothing. Many moles are often flat and harmless but you should always keep an eye out when new moles form or if existing moles change shape. It could be a sign of melanoma. If you see any marks that concern you, contact your doctor promptly.
Red Mole: Red moles are also known as cherry angiomas and contain blood vessels which cause the red coloring. Some children are born with them and they often appear on their trunk section. Similar to standard moles, they are usually painless and shouldn’t cause any concern unless they change shape. You can treat or remove the appearance of red moles on skin for cosmetic purposes if desired.
Hives: Hives often occur due to an allergic reaction. The spots are itchy and characterized by a patchy pink or red tone then can effect small areas or cluster into larger areas. Doctors will typically prescribe antihistamines but may also prescribe corticosteroids if the situation calls for them. The allergen could be digested, contact, or airborne so it is recommended to consult a specialist for an allergy panel so the culprit can be avoided.
Milk Bumps: Also known as milk pimples, milk rash, and baby acne, these small white bumps are actually called milia. The cysts often appear around the nose and are caused by clogged pores, which is common in newborns since their pores haven’t opened up yet. They typically go away on their own within a couple weeks and there is no need for concern. On older children, it may occur from damaged skin ducts caused by burning or blistering.
Many skin conditions are harmless, while others may be a warning sign to a bigger problem. No matter the condition, if you have concerns, just contact your physician. It is always best to be certain and relieve any worries you may have.
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