Keratosis Pilaris

What Is Keratosis Pilaris?

Keratosis pilaris is a common, mostly harmless skin condition, which appears as tiny bumps on the skin. Some people say these bumps look like goosebumps or the skin of a plucked chicken. For this reason, it’s commonly known as “chicken skin.” These rough-feeling bumps are actually plugs of dead skin cells. The plugs appear as chicken skin on arms most often on the upper arms and thighs (front). While it can occur at any age, keratosis pilaris most commonly affects children and adolescents. The symptoms often improve and then disappear entirely early in adult life. Children may have these bumps on their cheeks.

What Are The Symptoms Of Keratosis Pilaris?

The most notable symptom of keratosis pilaris is its appearance.

-Slight pinkness or redness around bumps

-Itchy, irritable skin

-Dry skin

-Bumps that feel like sandpaper

-Bumps that can appear in different colour depending on skin tone (flesh-coloured, white, red, pink, brown, or black)

What Causes Keratosis Pilaris?

Keratosis pilaris is caused by the build-up of a skin protein called keratin. Excess keratin can block hair follicles or pores in the skin, forming small, hard bumps. The reason for the build-up of keratin is unknown, but it often occurs alongside other skin conditions, such as dermatitis. In most cases, it is a genetic condition that runs in families.
Keratosis pilaris is not infectious, so you cannot spread or catch it.
Keratosis pilaris is more common in winter when the skin tends to be drier.

Keratosis Pilaris / Chicken Skin Treatment - How Is Keratosis Pilaris Treated?

Keratosis pilaris is often a mild condition that doesn’t require medical treatment and usually disappears by the age of 30.

#Specific measures#

-Moisturising cream that contains urea, salicylic acid, lactic acid or alpha hydroxy acids,

For best results, apply your moisturizer:

.After every shower or bath

.Within 5 minutes of getting out of the bath or shower, while your skin is still damp

.At least 2 or 3 times a day, gently massaging it into the skin with keratosis pilarisoisturise or help loosen the adherent scale in the follicles

-Topical retinoids

: Short courses of moderate potency topical steroids can be used for itch

Laser treatment or intense pulsed light to help with erythema or pigmentation

: A laser or light treatment may be used to treat keratosis pilaris. Your dermatologist may recommend one type of laser to reduce the swelling and redness. Another type of laser may improve your skin’s texture and reduce discolouration, including the brown spots that may appear when the bumps clear.


-Moisturise your skin – ask a pharmacist what’s most suitable for you

-Use mild and unperfumed soaps and bathing products

-Gently scrub your skin with a washcloth or exfoliating mitt

-Have cool or lukewarm showers and baths

-Pat your skin dry instead of rubbing it after washing


-Do not use perfumed soaps or bathing products that can dry out your skin

-Do not use harsh scrubs on your skin – this can make it worse

-Do not have hot baths or showers

-Do not scratch, pick or rub your skin

-Do not wear tight clothes (friction can irritate your skin)

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