Lately, my son’s arms have been bothering him. You see, on the back of his upper arms he has many small, hard, red bumps. They don’t itch and they don’t hurt, but my 11 year old doesn’t like them, and I totally get it.
Usually, the bumps that I’m referring tend to appear on your upper arms, thighs, and buttocks, sometimes with redness or swelling. They can also show up on your face, but that's less common.
But really, who wants to have little bumps anywhere on their body!?!?!?!? Especially when you are only a year from middle school and starting to really pay attention to your appearance.
My young son isn’t alone; because millions of Americans suffer from the exact same little bumps. They are a condition known as keratosis pilaris, and they affect nearly 50-80% of all adolescents and approximately 40% of adults.
When so many people are affected by this condition, shouldn’t we all learn more about it and how we can treat it?
Keratosis pilaris is caused by a buildup of keratin, the protein that protects skin from infections and other harmful things. The buildup forms a plug that blocks the opening of a hair follicle, but doctors don't know what triggers the buildup. Yup, you read that correctly, doctors aren’t sure about the cause.
I explained to my son how the keratin buildup was to blame, and while he appreciated the explanation, he really wanted to know what he could do to get rid of them.
Unfortunately, just like doctors aren’t sure why the buildup begins in the first place, they don’t exactly know how to cure them either. Currently, there is no known cure for keratosis pilaris, but researchers around the world are making progress on both understanding the why behind the buildup and the how can we cure it.
The main treatment for these tiny red bumps involves keeping them moist to lessen the symptoms. This typically involves using various lotions and creams until the sufferer finds something that works best for them.
According to WebMD (2016) the following simple things can help keep your skin comfortable.
• Don't scratch at the bumps or rub your skin roughly.
• Use warm water rather than hot for bathing and showering.
• Limit your time in the water.
• Try soap that has added oil or fat.
• Use thick moisturizers generously on the skin.
• Add moisture to the air in your home with a humidifier.
We are going to try some of these recommendations over the next month or two, but if my little man doesn’t see enough results, we are going to make an appointment with a dermatologist. There are stronger prescription topicals available, but we want to try over the counter remedies first.
Chances are, you or someone in your family suffers from this condition. Share your experiences with those around you and let’s all be a part of figuring out a way to rid these tiny red bumps for good!
The back to school pictures are starting to flood in. Days are noticeably shorter. The end of summer is officially nearing. August always reminds me of a Sunday. Sunday is one of the best days of the week but there's that lingering feeling behind it that the next day is Monday and we all know what that means.
How do we relish in these last couple weeks without letting the end bring us down? I want to take a million pictures to hold on to these fleeting moments with my children in this place we will never be again. I want to experience it all I can. But now is not the time to race around and check everything off our bucket list. Ours certainly has some holes in it but did we have fun? Yes. Was I ever bored? Never. What more could I ask for?
We can't stop time. We'll always be traveling figuratively from point A to point B, the scenery ever changing, always surprising us. Sometimes it’s wonderful and we bask in gratitude and sometimes it disappoints us, helping us grow. Isn't that what life is all about?
Isn't that where happiness comes from? When we relax and enjoy the journey with all it’s surprises? The serendipitous encounters with friends. The unexpected moments of peace, satisfaction and comfort. The unexpected pride found in a job well done or a lesson learned.
Summer is ending but life goes on. No matter where we are in life's path these little moments are what fills it with joy. Sometimes they happen under the glowing warm sun on the beach, sometimes they happen on a rainy evening sitting by a glowing fire.
There will never come a time when I am glad to see summer end but it won't keep me from enjoying fall and the gentle contrast it brings. Thank God for the beautiful changing of leaves, pumpkins, football and another day to travel through this life with the ones I love.
Note: Kendra Lindell gave birth to twins, Karson and Lucy on October 5th, 2014 at Willamette Valley Medical Center Birthing Center. She writes about her experience on the WVMC Facebook page. STAY TUNED for more stories from Kendra. See WVMCWeb.com for previous posts. ... See MoreSee Less