Keratosis Pilaris

Skin Conditions & Treatments > Keratosis Pilaris

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Dermatology A-Z

        If both of your upper arms are bumpy and red, seemingly all the time, you probably have an inherited condition called keratosis pilaris. It is very common and in fact, we consider it a variant of normal skin. You can thank your mom or dad because it is inherited about 50% of the time and is a life-long condition that improves as you age. Sometimes it can occur on the cheeks, legs, and even the entire trunk in severe cases. There are a few simple methods to manage your keratosis pilaris. First, exfoliate the bumpy parts in the shower with a clarisonic brush, a washcloth, or a loofah. You can also add in an exfoliating scrub. Use circular motions to gently remove the dry bumpy "horns". Once out of the the shower, apply a moisturizer. There are some moisturizers that have an exfoliating ingredient that can help too, like Amlactin or Cerave-SA. If there is redness too, hydrocortisone (an over-the-counter anti-itch cream) twice per day can help minimize it. You will see improvement over a week or so however, if you stop your exfoliating/moisturizing routine, it will return to its normal bumpy, red state. Sometimes, prescription creams can be given by your dermatologists at Cinco Ranch Dermatology.

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