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Notes on Perioral Dermatitis

Perioral dermatitis is a facial rash that typically occurs around the mouth, commonly found in young women. It appears as small patches of acne-like break-outs and sometimes creeps up to the nose or eyes. It’s not contagious and most people won’t feel any physical side effects, but it can cause itchiness, dryness or even a stinging sensation for some. 

The exact cause of perioral dermatitis isn’t known, but it can pop up after coming into contact with products or ingredients that irritate your skin, which is why it’s paramount when introducing a new active into your routine to start with a low dose and apply every other night. Perioral dermatitis has also been linked to the contraceptive pill, with some women experiencing it as a side effect. It can also occur after prolonged use of topical steroid creams.

Like any form of dermatitis, it’s best to consult a dermatologist so your skin can be diagnosed properly and they can tailor a treatment plan specific to your needs. The most effective way of treating the different formations of dermatitis including perioral is with a topical cortisone treatment. A course of oral antibiotics may also be prescribed. 

For your at-home regime, I recommend paring it right back to the basic fundamentals of cleanse, hydrate and protect. Look to gentle nourishing products that are formulated for sensitive skin, avoiding any active ingredients on affected areas, whilst re-applying moisturiser throughout the day to ensure the skin is kept hydrated. A healthy balanced diet full of anti-inflammatory ingredients is also key to helping the body fight inflammation and promote optimal skin health in every sense of the word.