Childhood Skin Problems: When to See a Specialist

Childhood Skin Problems: When to See a Specialist

Most of us think of skin problems beginning during adolescence when puberty kicks oil glands into overdrive, and elevated hormone levels trigger acne breakouts. But kids can have skin conditions at any age, and medical care is often necessary to prevent them from getting worse.

At Primary Care Associates, our team helps kids and parents discover the cause of childhood skin problems, so they can receive treatment that can help them feel better. If your child has a change in the way their skin looks, here’s when it’s time to call the office.

Childhood skin problems

Skin is an organ — just like your heart or your liver. But unlike internal organs, skin can give us some very clear signs when there’s a problem. That works to your child’s benefit because it also makes it easier to get medical attention early before a problem becomes more serious.

Since skin is on the “outside” of your body, it’s exposed to lots of germs and irritants. As a result, skin conditions can be exceedingly common, especially in kids whose immune systems might not be fully developed.

Some of the most common childhood skin conditions include:

Chickenpox, measles, and other systemic diseases can cause skin problems, too, and so can medications and food allergies.

Why medical treatment is important

Seeking medical care for childhood skin problems is crucial for several reasons. First, some skin conditions can be signs of a serious medical problem. In that case, having a doctor’s evaluation could help diagnose the problem early and prevent it from developing into something more dangerous.

Second, some skin conditions are contagious. If your child has one of these skin issues, you’ll want to have them avoid contact with other kids or even with shared items or surfaces. Some skin conditions require your child to miss school to avoid spreading the disease.

Skin conditions that take a while to heal can become infected, and that infection can spread to other parts of your child’s body. Or the infection can leave scars that can take a toll on your child’s self-esteem.

Finally, many skin conditions can be extremely uncomfortable and depending on their symptoms, can cause a child to feel self-conscious or be “picked on” by their peers. 

When to call the doctor

It’s always a good idea to call the office if your child has a rash or other skin issue, so our team can determine if an urgent care visit or other office appointment is indicated. In general, it’s a good idea to schedule an office visit if your child: 

You should also call the doctor right away for any skin condition in a child younger than six months of age.

Don’t ignore a skin problem

Even if a skin problem is not a sign of a serious underlying medical problem, it can still be uncomfortable for your child — and it could become infected quickly. Seeking medical guidance is the best way to help your child feel better and stay healthy.

To find out what’s causing your child’s skin problem, call Primary Care Associates or book an appointment online at our location in Frederick or Clarksburg, Maryland.

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