Skin diseases are a broad range of conditions that include diseases caused by bacterial, viral & parasitic infections, allergic reactions as well as skin cancers. The most common of these conditions is atopic dermatitis, a type of skin inflammation that mostly starts in infancyThough many skin diseases are not fatal or life-threatening, they can be debilitating and significantly affect people’s quality of lives.. In this article, we’ll cover the most common skin conditions, their underlying causes,their symptoms, treatment options as well as some preventive means..
What are some common skin diseases?
Skin conditions are illnesses that affect skin, hair, nail as well as mucosal area. Rashes, inflammation, itchiness, and other skin changes can be caused by these diseases. They can be either temporary or permanent.. Some skin conditions are minor, whereas others can be fatal.
Skin diseases vary in their symptoms and presentations, some are itchy or rashy skin, others appear blotchy or feel thick or bumpy. Most skin conditions can be properly treated by a board certified dermatologist, however some can become very serious if there are any delays in seeking proper care.
Types of Skin Disorders
Rashes (skin eruptions), inflammation, itching, and other skin changes can be caused by inflammatory skin diseases. We will discuss few common skin disorders in this article.:
When your hair follicles get blocked with oil and dead skin cells, acne, an inflammatory skin condition develops. Acne can affect anyone at any age, but it is most common in teenagers. Slowly dissipating bumps and pimples are followed by the emergence of new ones. If acne is not treated, it can cause permanent scars. Your risk of developing such complications decreases the earlier you start your treatment.
|Symptom||Whiteheads (closed comedone)|
Blackheads (open comedone)
Small red, soft bumps
Large, solid, painful lumps under the skin
Painful, pus-filled lumps under the skin
|Affected Body Parts||Face|
|Underlying Causes||Changes in hormones|
|Treatment||Retinoids and retinoid-like drugs for addressing comedonal acne|
Antibiotics for inflammatory acne
Azelaic acid and salicylic acid for comedonal and inflammatory acne
Dapsone for inflammatory acne
Accutane for comedonal and inflammatory acne
|Home Remedy||Tea tree oil|
|Prevention||Clean your skin daily with a cleanser appropriate for your skin type|
Healthy Diet which is low in sugar and dairy products
Manage stress levels
Moisturize which is non-comedogenic
Use Sunscreen which is non-comedogenic
Hives, weals, welts, or nettle rash are other names for the itchy, raised skin rash known as urticaria. It can appear on just one part of the body or cover a large area. The rash can be as small as a few millimeters or as large as covering the entire skin and is typically very itchy. Despite the fact that the affected area may change its appearance within 24 hours, the rash usually resolves within a few days.
|Symptom||Resemble insect bites|
It tends to move around
It tends to change shape
Red or skin-colored bumps with clear edges
They usually appear suddenly and fade quickly
|Affected Body Parts||Any part of the body|
|Underlying Causes||Consuming specific foods|
Exposure to certain plants, animals, chemicals, and latex
Cold temperatures, like wind or cold water.
Sweating as a result of exercise, emotional stress, or eating spicy foods.
A reaction to medication, an insect bite or sting
|Treatment||Most hives fade on their own|
Allergy medications including antihistamines
|Home Remedy||Oatmeal bath|
|Prevention||Remove certain foods from your diet.|
Reduce exposure to allergens in your home or work environment
Use scent-free and dye-free detergents and soaps.
Reduce your daily stress
Wear loose-fitting clothing
Unspecified Skin Rash
A rash is a widespread outbreak of skin. Rashes can have a wide range of appearances, and there are numerous potential causes. Some rashes do not require treatment and will go away on their own; others can be treated at home, and still, others may be a sign of something more serious.
Long-term scratching can cause dry, scaly, or crusted skin to become thick and leathery.
Small, oozing blisters that are filled with fluid.
Infection of the areas of broken skin.
|Affected Body Parts||May be local to just one part of the body or can cover large areas.|
|Underlying Causes||Eczema (atopic dermatitis)|
Extreme weather changes
|Treatment||Topical steroid cream including Hydrocortisone 1%Over the counter anti-itch creams or ointments|
|Home Remedy||Cold compress or ice bag|
Aloe vera (fresh)
Tea tree oil
Apple cider vinegar
|Prevention||Do not scrub your skin.|
Make use of mild cleaners.
Avoid direct application of cosmetic lotions or ointments to the rash.
For cleaning, use warm water rather than hot water.
Stop applying any new lotions or cosmetics.
The herpes simplex virus (HSV) is a common infection simply known as herpes. One of its most common symptoms is a group of itchy blisters. HSV-1 and HSV-2 are the two types of HSV that can cause skin rashes in different areas.
- Orolabial herpes is typically caused by HSV-1. It affects the region around the mouth and nose and spreads through saliva.
- Sexual contact is typically how HSV-2 spreads and causes genital herpes. The genital area is where the rash appears. Orolabial herpes can also be spread via oral sex.
|Symptom||Blisters on |
buttocks (near or around the anus)
Blisters can develop in the mouth, on the lips, on the face, and elsewhere that come into contact with infected areas.
|Affected Body Parts||The genitals|
Around the mouth
Nearly anywhere on the body
|Underlying Causes||Herpes simplex virus (HSV)|
|Treatment||Genital herpes has no known cure.|
Antiviral medications have the potential to prevent or shorten outbreaks:
|Home Remedy||Warm compress|
Baking soda paste
|Prevention||Use condoms for oral, anal, and vaginal sex|
Melasma is a skin condition that causes patches and spots that are darker than the skin’s natural tone, usually on the face. Melasma is a common skin condition that can be confused with post inflammatory hyperpigmentation. Board-certified dermatologists have the knowledge and experience needed to provide you with an accurate diagnosis and treatment plan.
|Symptom||Dark patches and spots|
Cover large areas
|Affected Body Parts||Cheeks|
Bridge of the nose
Also on the neck and forearms.
|Underlying Causes||Any form of radiation, including ultraviolet, visible, and infrared (heat) light|
|Treatment||Melasma disappears on its own in some women.|
Prescribed topical retinoids
|Home Remedy||Apple cider vinegar|
|Prevention||Avoiding the sun, tanning beds, LED screens, irritant soaps, and hormonal treatments including birth control|
Dermatitis is a catch-all term for any type of skin irritation. It has numerous causes and manifestations, but the most common are itchy, dry skin. Conversely, it might result in the skin blistering, oozing, crusting, or flaking off. Eczema is not a contagious skin condition. Depending on the type of the dermatitis, the underlying cause of it can significant vary
Dry, cracked skin
Painful skin, with stinging or burning
|Affected Body Parts||Infant: knee and elbows but it can affect anywhere|
Children: behind knee and elbow area as well as face, shin, arm
Adults: it is usually limited to hands but it can affect anywhere
|Underlying Causes||Skin being in contact with an irritating agent |
Underlying genetic disorder
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory including Protopic & Elidel
|Home Remedy||Replace your fabric softener or laundry detergent.|
Lukewarm (not hot) showers or baths
|Prevention||Use a humidifier|
Wear loose-fitting, natural-fiber clothing
Avoid wearing plated jewelry, particularly in your ears.
Take warm baths or showers and use gentle soaps.
Moisturize your skin after a bath.
Wearing a watch band that presses against your skin for extended periods of time can cause rashes due to friction and sweat buildup.
How to Prevent Skin Diseases?
Some skin conditions cannot be prevented. For instance, there is no way of changing your genetic profile or preventing an autoimmune disorder from occurring. You can take precautions to prevent infectious skin diseases. Contagious skin conditions may be avoided if you:
- Use soap and warm water to frequently wash your hands.
- Keep your distance from anyone who has an infection on their skin.
- Cleaning everything you use is a smart idea before using public areas like the gym.
- Never share private items like swimsuits, blankets, or hairbrushes.
- Get enough sleep; seven to eight hours daily.
- Drink a great deal of water.
- It is best to avoid undergoing too much physical or emotional stress.
These tips can help you avoid skin disorders like atopic dermatitis and acne, which are not contagious.
- Use a mild cleanser and water to wash your face every day.
- Apply moisturizer to your skin.
- Try to limit your exposure to allergens of all kinds.
- Avoid coming into contact with harsh chemicals and other irritants.
- Avoid harsh wind, heat, and cold on your skin.
Skin Disease Prevention and Diet
Studies suggest an increasing body of research has found that dietary change may serve as a component of therapy for certain skin conditions. Acne, atopic dermatitis, aging skin, psoriasis, and rosacea are a few examples of these conditions. While other foods, nutrients, or dietary habits might be advantageous, some could act as disease “triggers.” Avoidance or elimination diets may be helpful in some conditions, although testing may be recommended first. An eating pattern that prioritizes the consumption of whole foods over highly processed foods may be able to treat some skin conditions and will undoubtedly be able to prevent the co-morbidities that go along with them.
How to Treat Skin Conditions?
The severity of skin diseases determines how they are treated. It may take several months of treatment before skin condition symptoms improve. Topical agents, oral, injection, and laser treatments are all common treatments for skin conditions. Below is a brief look into how skin diseases are treated.
Laser skin resurfacing
Laser skin resurfacing removes skin by vaporizing it layer by layer. This well-known procedure is also recognized as lasabrasion, laser peel, or laser vaporization. The epidermis, or top layer of your skin is removed by laser treatment while the dermis, or inner layer, is heated. The lasers stimulate the growth of new collagen fibers, resulting in smoother and firmer skin.
Acne or chickenpox scars, uneven skin pigmentation, skin scars or birthmarks, age spots, liver spots, and sun-damaged skin are all examples of skin conditions that would be treated with laser skin resurfacing.
Skin conditions are treated with both topical and oral medications. Topical medications are generally easier to use than oral medications because they are applied directly to the skin rather than being swallowed.
The following are some common topical treatments for skin conditions:
- Antibacterials: These include Mupirocin and clindamycin, and are frequently used to treat or prevent infection.
- Antifungal agents: To treat skin conditions like ringworm and athlete’s foot, common topical antifungal medications include clotrimazole (Lotrimin), ketoconazole (Nizoral), and terbinafine (LamisilAT).
- Benzoyl peroxide: Acne is treated with benzoyl peroxide-containing creams, gels, washes, and foams.
- Coal tar: This topical medication comes in strengths ranging from 0.5% to 5% and is offered both with and without a prescription. Psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis are two conditions that coal tar is used to treat (typically in shampoos).
- Corticosteroids: These are used to treat eczema and other skin conditions. Foams, lotions, ointments, and creams are just a few of the many different forms that corticosteroids can take.
- Non-steroidal ointment: For eczema, including atopic dermatitis, the ointments crisaborole (Eucrisa) and tacrolimus (Protopic), as well as the cream pimecrolimus (Elidel), are prescribed.
- Retinoids: These treatments (including Differin, Retin-A, and Tazorac) come in the form of gels, foams, lotions, or creams and are made from vitamin A. They are used to treat conditions such as acne.
- Salicylic acid: This medication is available in patches, gels, soaps, shampoos, and washes. Many skin care products that are used to treat warts and acne contain the active ingredient salicylic acid.
The following are some frequent oral or injectable treatments for skin conditions:
- Antibiotics: Many skin conditions are treated with oral antibiotics. Dicloxacillin, erythromycin, and tetracycline are typical antibiotics.
- Retinoids: All forms of severe psoriasis are specifically treated with acitretin (Soriatane). It slows the growth of skin cells. It should not be used if you are planning to become pregnant, are pregnant, or are breastfeeding because it causes serious birth defects.
- Antifungal agents: itraconazole and fluconazole are examples of oral antifungal medications. More serious fungal infections can be treated with these medications. An oral antifungal medication called terbinafine may be used to treat nail fungus infections.
- Antiviral agents: acyclovir (Zovirax), famciclovir (Famvir), and valacyclovir are examples of common antiviral medications (Valtrex). Herpes and shingles-related skin conditions are also treated with antiviral medications.
- Corticosteroids: Prednisone is one of these medications that can be useful in treating eczema and other inflammatory and autoimmune skin conditions, like vasculitis. Dermatologists prefer topical steroids because they have fewer side effects, but prednisone can occasionally be used temporarily.
- Immunosuppressants: Severe cases of psoriasis and eczema can be treated with immunosuppressants like azathioprine (Imuran) and methotrexate (Trexall).
- Biologics: The most recent treatments for psoriasis and other conditions are these new therapies. Biologic medications include, for instance, adalimumab (Humira), adalimumab-atto (Amgevita), a biosimilar to Humira, etanercept (Enbrel), etanercept-szzs (Erelzi), a biosimilar to Enbrel, infliximab (Remicade), ixekizumab (Taltz), and secukinumab (Ilumya).
- Enzyme inhibitors: To combat inflammation, enzyme inhibitors like apremilast (Otezla) block an enzyme in the immune system. An FDA-approved enzyme inhibitor for mild to moderate atopic dermatitis/eczema is called Eucrisa ointment.
Skin health can benefit greatly from learning about proper skin care and skin disorder treatment. Some conditions require the attention of a doctor, while others can be safely treated at home.These symptoms include dry skin, itchiness, skin pigmentation, bumps, blisters, dark spots on the skin, and skin discoloration or spotty formation. Learn about your symptoms or condition and consult with a professional to determine the best treatment methods that might include topical, oral or surgical. A dermatologist must perform a diagnosis because not everyone experiences the same symptoms from the same skin condition.
I have a skin condition that doesn’t fit into any of the categories listed, what should I do?
Thank you for your comment! If you have a skin condition that you are unsure about, the best course of action is to schedule a virtual consultation with one of our dermatologists. They will be able to assess your skin, provide a diagnosis, and recommend a treatment plan. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us, we’re here to help!
Can a dermatologist diagnose skin diseases through a virtual consultation?
Yes, absolutely! Our dermatologists are trained and equipped to diagnose and treat most of skin conditions through remote consultations. They use high-quality image-sharing tools to examine your skin and diagnose any issues. Thank you for your question!