Every parent wants two primary gifts for their kids: health and happiness. It is heartbreaking when your child doesn’t feel well. When that illness is as clear and visible as a skin condition, it makes it even worse because on top of the physical discomfort, kids can suffer from teasing and social issues when other kids see their symptoms. As a parent, one of the best things you can do for your child is to know about the most common conditions they could face so you can treat them or get help for them when they arise. Let’s start with the most frequent skin conditions that appear in children.
Parents know that kids have a tendency to find the most unsanitary item no matter where they are. It is no surprise that this leads to plenty of skin infections. When kids come into contact with different types of fungi in particular, the fungi can infect their skin.
One particularly common and identifiable fungal infection in children is ringworm. Despite the name, this condition does not involve worms or parasites at all. It gets its name because the virus creates ring-like sores on the skin. Ringworm is contagious, so children can get it from each other or even from a family pet who picks up the fungus. If you believe your child may have ringworm, we can typically clear up the infection with a topical antifungal cream.
Despite the old wives’ tales about toads, warts come from a virus that is everywhere: human papillomavirus, or HPV. While most people think of HPV as a sexually transmitted infection, that only accounts for one strain of HPV. The other HPV strains are passed around through simple hand contact. For many of these strains, when they get into the skin through an open cut, they cause a wart. Anyone can get these types of warts, but they happen to kids more often because kids tend to have more cuts and scrapes than adults do.
When parents see small pink bumps on their children’s skin, there are certain conditions that immediately come to mind, like chickenpox, hives, or even measles. Fewer parents know about another frequent condition in kids: molluscum contagiosum.
Molluscum contagiosum is caused by a virus. It causes small bumps on the skin that may be pink or flesh-colored. They aren’t necessarily uncomfortable, but the virus is contagious via touch. Generally, they are easily treated. Still, it is important to visit a dermatologist to make sure your child does have molluscum contagiosum instead of another condition that needs a different treatment.
Atopic dermatitis is more commonly known as eczema. This chronic condition can affect people of any age, but it often begins in childhood. It leads to frequent outbreaks of skin irritation, including red, itchy, dry patches. Fortunately, some children outgrow their eczema, especially if it begins when they are infants.
Despite the fact that eczema is chronic, meaning that it cannot be “cured,” there is plenty that you can do to make your child’s life easier. Our experienced dermatologists can provide you with specialized creams for eczema, and it helps to keep your child’s skin moisturized as well. It is also important to recognize that in some cases, a child’s outbreaks can be triggered by harsh chemicals touching their skin, like fragrances and aggressive detergents. In addition to all this, some kids are candidates for other eczema treatments like light therapy. At our dedicated Eczema Center, we can get to the bottom of your child’s condition and determine the most successful treatments to meet their needs.
In general, illnesses are more difficult to spot in children because kids have a more difficult time describing their symptoms. The fortunate part of skin conditions is that you can see some of your child’s symptoms for yourself. Knowing about the common conditions above can help you have an idea of how to help your child if a skin condition appears. Regardless, though, you should always see a dermatologist to make sure your child gets an accurate diagnosis. You can schedule an appointment with us at your convenience. In the meantime, follow Dermatology Associates of Atlanta on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for more helpful tips.