Perioral Dermatitis: American Academy of Dermatology
Perioral dermatitis is a rash that usually forms around the mouth. Perioral means ‘around the mouth’. Dermatitis is the medical term for ‘inflamed skin’.
People of all skin colors get perioral dermatitis. This rash is most common in young and middle-aged women. Children and adolescents can also get this rash, which occurs in both girls and boys. Few men, however, get perioral dermatitis.
What does Perioral Dermatitis look like?
Redness, swelling and acne-like bumps are common in people with perioral dermatitis. The rash usually circles the mouth but leaves a thin band of skin around the lips that looks normal. Many people have a burning sensation around the mouth. Sometimes the rash itches. The skin can peel and look scaly.
This rash can form elsewhere on the fact. It can circle the eyes and nose and even appear on the cheeks. Sometimes the rash appear on the forehead.
What causes Perioral Dermatitis?
It is not understand why some people get this rash and what causes it.
Some people who develop perioral dermatitis have applied a corticosterioid medicine to their face or inhaled the ingredient through an oral inhaler used for asthma.
A corticosteroid is not always the cause. You can get this rash after using toothpaste that contains fluoride or cinnamon. Tarter-control and whitening toothpastes also can cause perioral dermatitis. Even moisturizers, makeup and sunscreen can cause this rash. Dermatologists recommend that even after the rash clears, you use alternative products to prevent the rash from returning.
How is diagnosed?
A dermatologist can often make the diagnosis by asking you questions about the rash and examining your skin.
How is it treated?
Dermatologists recommended treating perioral dermatitis. Without treatment, the rash can last for months or even years.
An oral or topical antibiotic often provides effective treatment. For a mild case or for a woman who is pregnant, dermatologists recommend a topical antibiotic that you apply to your face along with gentle moisturizer.
Most patients improve after taking an antibiotic for several weeks or months. If you stop taking the antibiotic too early, the rash can return. It is important to follow your dermatologist’s instructions.
To clear the rash, you also may need to stop using certain skin care products, cosmetics and toothpastes. If you use a product that contains a corticosteroid, your dermatologist can help you develop a plan to stop using it and prevent a recurrence of perioral dermatitis.
If you have had perioral dermatitis, follow these recommendations from dermatologists to help prevent a flare up:
*Do not use topical corticosteroid creams on your face for more than a couple days without a dermatologist’s guidance.
*Ask your dermatologist to recommend moisturizers, cosmetics, toothpastes and sunscreens.
*If your skin does flare up, do not try to treat it yourself. Some of the products that you can buy without a prescription contain a corticosteroid, which can make the rash worse.
Why see a dermatologist:
If you have signs and symptoms of perioral dermatitis, you should see a dermatologist. Many skin conditions cause redness and acne-like breakouts. Without an accurate diagnosis, treatment can worsen the condition. A dermatologist can accurately diagnose the condition and provide effective treatment.
A board-certified dermatologist is a medical doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating the medical, surgical and cosmetic conditions of the skin, hair and nails. To learn more or to find a board-certified dermatologist in your area, visit aad.org or call toll free (888) 462-DERM (3376).
To learn more:
The American Academy of Dermatology is your trusted source for expert information on skin, hair and nail health.
Visit aad.org to:
*Learn the signs and symptoms, treatments and tips for managing a variety of skin, hair and nail conditions.
*Learn how to prevent and detect skin cancer including how to perform a skin self-exam, download a body mole map for tracking changes in your skin and find tree SPOTtme skin cancer screenings in your area.
*Watch videos with simple tips on how to care for your skin, hair and nails.
*Find updates on the latest health, beauty and cosmetic treatments.
*Locate a dermatologist in your area.
Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from the American Academy of Dermatology pamphlet. Please call or email them for more information.