Perioral dermatitis: symptoms and treatments

Periodic dermatitis is called dermatological disease that manifests intensely around the mouth. From that location derives its name and its main characteristic. It can also be named as peribucal dermatitis.

It is a pathology that share symptoms with other more recognized, such as acne, rosacea, contact dermatitis and even shingles. Hence the importance of proper diagnosis to employ the precise treatment.

Perioral dermatitis is not contagious. Who suffers it is not able to transmit it by contact to another person. Nor is it a disease that can be classified as dangerous. The greatest impact is aesthetic and quality of life.

The most affected are young women and children in a particular presentation of the disease. Sand has noticed an increase in the affectation in recent years, especially in industrialized countries. This is associated with the intensive use of cosmetic creams.

Causes of perioral dermatitis

The etiology of this disease is not clear. It is assumed that it happens in people with a certain predisposition to skin allergies. The skin would be more sensitive to the action of certain substances that would cause the symptoms. The substances that science has identified as triggers are:

  • Creams with corticosteroids: of those that apply to the face.
  • Toothpastes: those that are sold with fluoride.
  • Varied cosmetic creams: from makeups to sunscreens.
  • Steroids for nasal or respiratory use: even indicated in pathologies such as asthma.
  • Contraceptives: in his oral presentation mainly.

Some cosmetics are associated with the production of perioral dermatitis symptoms.

It is also associated with poor hygiene of the face, either for lack of proper washing or for the use of soaps that are not indicated. Among infants, of course, Parents play a fundamental role in preventing perioral dermatitis through hygiene.

In the case of some women of childbearing age, hormonal changes of the menstrual cycle are behind the onset of symptoms. For them, dermatitis is cyclic and always reappears every month with a similar frequency.

A particular situation is that of the pediatric age. The cause of perioral dermatitis In children it is the irritation that produces saliva around the lips. In short, it would be a variant of contact eczema.

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Symptoms of perioral dermatitis

The clinical sign par excellence of this disease is the appearance of small red rises over a dry and reddened skin sector. Sometimes, those elevations may contain pus.

The location of the lesions is always around the mouth. Mainly affected are the folds of the nose and the folds of the lips. It is striking that about two millimeters of skin adjacent to the lips are usually free of symptoms.

In addition to skin lesions patients report pain, burning or itching in the affected region. They are not always present or maintained throughout the period of the outbreak.

Based on the symptoms and manifestations, doctors make the diagnosis with the physical examination. Unlike acne, perioral dermatitis never makes comedones. On the other hand, the difference with rosacea is the location, since it is not present around the mouth.

It is rarely necessary to perform a biopsy. The diagnosis is usually clear in the office exam. However, when pathological anatomy of the lesions is required It is likely to be in the presence of more aggressive variants of the disease.

In children, perioral dermatitis must be distinguished from atopic dermatitis or eczema.

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The basis of perioral dermatitis treatment is to avoid triggers. When the lesions are already present, The general measures have to do with the removal of possible causal factors. However, the withdrawal should be gradual to avoid rebound symptoms.

These measures should be maintained even when the lesions have disappeared, since who once suffered from the disease has a high probability of having it again. The main thing would be:

  • Use only some dermatologically tested cosmetics with ingredients that have already been tested on the skin itself.
  • Take the routine of washing your face every night.
  • Dry the skin carefully, without rubbing or friction, and drying with non-irritating cloth towels
  • Use moisturizers that do not have corticosteroids between their components.

If the doctor so determines, antibiotics can be used to eliminate active lesions. The most commonly used medications are tetracyclines and erythromycin, either locally in creams or as an oral treatment.

A treatment option that is increasingly studied and applied more is the use of pimecrolimus cream with a concentration of 1%. Scientific studies have shown rapid improvement of symptoms in patients who were prescribed the preparation.

Although pimecrolimus is a good option especially for patients with a history of corticosteroid use, the long-term adverse effects of its use must be considered. This is a topic on which there is discussion and divisions among the scientific community. Because it is necessary that the treatment be supervised by a professional.