If you have clusters of small painless bumps on your skin you may be suffering from keratosis pilaris. This condition often occurs on the cheeks, buttocks, thighs, and on the back of the arms and is often mistaken for a rash, acne, or even goose bumps. Some people refer to this condition as “chicken skin”. It is generally not irritating or itchy so that is often how it is distinguished from actually being a rash or eczema.
This is a harmless condition where the keratin, a protein found in the skin, clogs the hair follicles or pore. It often occurs in people who already have dermatitis or dry skin and is estimated to affect up to 40% of the population, often starting around adolescence. It does tend to run in families so if your parents have it – chances are you will be prone to it as well. Once you have keratosis pilaris you will require ongoing treatment to keep the condition away and stop it from spreading.
Often, gentle exfoliation or microdermabrasion is enough to get rid of these bumps – especially if you catch it early. Moisturizing any dry areas can help the condition not to spread to other parts of your body. Natural practitioners often recommend coconut oil as a moisturizer to help keratosis pilaris. For particularly stubborn cases – doctors can prescribe topical medications or laser treatments, but if you treat it early you should not need to go this route.
If you have dry skin, or have had keratosis pilaris in the past, lessen your chances of getting it by washing your skin daily with a mild cleanser, exfoliating often using a loofah or a product such as the ZENMED AHA/BHA Complex or the ZENMED Microdermabrasion Complex, and keep all dry areas well moisturized.