Keratosis pilaris (KP) can occur anywhere, including on face. The bad news, it is more difficult to treat than what most people think. The good news, many times it is harmless or doesn’t carry the risk of other health problems. Therefore, treatment is usually not necessary. But since face is the most visible spot of your body, you may want to treat it – will it go away?
In fact, it is a common skin problem. For example, in the UK, it affects about 1 in 3 people. It can affect people of all ages. However, it is relatively more common in adolescents and children.
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In gender, it affects more women than men. Other risk factors include:
- If you have other skin problems, particularly such as dry scaly skin (ichthyosis) and eczema.
- According to a study, people of Celtic origin are at higher risk to have KP.
The time of when the problem starts to appear can vary. But many times, it starts during adulthood. Sometimes it also can occur in babies and remain for years. It may worsen during puberty.
KP often appears on the thighs, arms (especially back of the upper arms), and buttocks. It can affect one or both of arms /thighs.
And for KP on face, it is relatively less common. However again, the problem can occur anywhere.
In addition, there are also rare variants of KP that can affect other sites of the body, such as scalp and eyebrows. Even in very rare cases, it can affect the entire body, too.
Like most things in skin conditions, the symptoms are essential to help diagnose KP. Even there is usually no any test for the diagnosis. Typically, doctors are able to diagnose it by looking at the affected skin.
Acne-like bumps of KP on the face may be mistaken for acne. Other common symptoms include:
- The bumps of KP on face are usually less visible and smoother. However, sometimes these bumps can be unsightly, causing low self-esteem.
- Slight pinkness /redness may be seen around bumps.
- If you touch the bumps, they can be rough, like sandpaper or ‘chicken skin’.
Some treatments are available, though in general the problem is difficult to treat. Even many times, the treatment doesn’t provide permanent relief. In other words, if you stop taking the treatment, the problem may return.
Again, since KP is harmless condition, the treatment is usually not suggested. But there are some lifestyle measures to help ease the problem such as by keeping your skin moist, cleaning your skin carefully, and using moisturizer after washing!
In some cases, KP can improve after puberty and many times go away at the age of about 30. However, some adults may still have it in their 40s or even 50s. See more in-depth information about how KP improves with age in this section!
Remember that the skin of your face is sensitive. If you think that the treatment is necessary, it’s much better to talk with your doctor before trying any treatment!