How To Treat Perioral Dermatitis


Rashes come in all different forms and sizes. Perioral dermatitis is a form of skin rash that usually occurs around the mouth, lips and nostrils. Very rarely does this form of rash affect other parts of the body. This rash is seen mostly among females between the ages of 15-40 but also males and those in other age groups can develop perioral dermatitis. Whenever perioral dermatitis shows up it can be extremely embarrassing, regardless of your age. However, there should be no reason to worry as we will cover how to treat perioral dermatitis.


The symptoms of this rash are seen around the eyes, nose, forehead and mouth. Each symptom can differ depending on a person’s skin type. It is important to know that some diseases such as acne and rosacea can have similar symptoms to perioral dermatitis. Below is a list of the most symptoms of perioral dermatitis.

  • Bumps
  • Rash
  • Scaly appearance
  • Pus
  • Itchiness
  • Burning
  • Redness
  • Acne-like appearance

How To Treat Perioral Dermatitis


Unfortunately, perioral dermatitis does not have a known cause. Sometimes there are unexplainable rashes that are not contagious but appear out of nowhere. Doctors have speculated that the use of corticosteroids has a significant link to this type of rash. Sometimes the excess buildup of unwashed makeup on the face can cause the skin to flare up and develop a rash. Other possible causes for perioral dermatitis include:

  • Excess sun exposure
  • Allergic reaction
  • Bacteria on the skin
  • Birth control pills
  • Hormonal changes
  • Certain cosmetic products
  • Change of skin care product


Generally, doctors will look at the skin and instantly indicate what type of rash it is. In order to avoid future problems such as an infection, a bacterial culture can be done.  If a person is suffering from an allergic reaction, a patch testing can be done to see if the allergic reaction causes this form of rash. Regardless of the cause, doctors will always tell you how to treat perioral dermatitis.

How To Treat Perioral Dermatitis

Depending on the extent of perioral dermatitis, it can clear up on its own within months or even years. Read on to learn how to treat perioral dermatitis. The first form of treatment is called zero treatment. This type of regime includes zero medication, zero (or little) cosmetic uses and no skin exfoliants. This treatment gives the skin time to heal itself without the use of medication and irritants.

The second and most common form of treatment is with medication. Medications such as doxycycline and erythromycin can be used. The first is a daily dosage of medication for up to a month of use. The second is an antibiotic in the form of cream. For small bouts of perioral dermatitis, the use of metronidazole is prescribed twice a day for a month.

How To Treat Perioral Dermatitis

To accompany either form of treatments, those with this rash should wash their skin with no soap or a mild soap such as Cetaphil. Do not scrub the affected areas because it can worsen the rash. If topical steroids are the reason for the rash, then using a pimecrolimus cream can help diminish the inflammation of the skin. Certain acne medications have been proven to help reduce the symptoms of perioral dermatitis.

A recent study with coconut oil has revealed that it can be beneficial for the skin and reduces inflammation. For those who are iffy about using medication, the topical ointment Emuaid, is the perfect product to use for perioral dermatitis. The soothing formula of this homeopathic ointment does not irritate the skin and calms skin inflammation. The best part of this product is that it treats a range of different types of dermatitis and has no side effects. Completely natural remedies to reduce or remove this rash include: aloe vera, honey, natural yogurt, apple cider vinegar and vitamin E. Remember that you should always use the best product for your skin. Just because a specific product worked for a friend or family member doesn’t mean it will work for you.


Due to the unknown cause of perioral dermatitis, it is difficult to determine a prevention course. It is always best to know how to treat perioral dermatitis before choosing a prevention method. The best things to do to have clean and healthy skin are:

  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Drink lots of fluids, especially water
  • Wash your face before bed and remove any makeup
  • Update your cosmetics and do not use old products
  • Use mild soap to wash your skin
  • Limit the amount of skin products applied
  • Keep a skin log to see what products you used and when the rash reappears