I acknowledged it immediately when a father or mother in one among my social media teams posted a close-up of their little one’s pores and skin. The pink, raised bumps had been shiny, and the kid’s father or mother famous that the bumps appeared to have multiplied in a single day. The commenters performed a well-known spherical of name-that-rash, some suspecting hen pox, eczema, and get in touch with dermatitis. One mother (at all times) requested if the kid had just lately been vaccinated. Another one requested if the kid had tried any new meals the day earlier than.
But I knew the reality. The little one had molluscum, and I commented, sorrowfully, letting the father or mother know my unofficial medical opinion. All 4 of my youngsters have had this dreaded, highly-contagious, aggressive pores and skin problem up to now. Molluscum isn’t the top of the world, however it could possibly take weeks and even months (as much as a freaking 12 months!) to clear up, and in the meantime, the children go it to one another. Cue David Rose saying, “Ew.”
Thankfully, Scary Mommy was capable of get in contact with a dermatologist to assist us with all our burning molluscum questions. More so, we bought you the solutions you want so that you’re ready if and when your kiddo comes residence with these shiny, pink bumps. We spoke with Dr. Lucy Chen, a board-certified dermatologist, working towards at Riverchase Dermatology in Miami.
What is molluscum?
Dr. Chen shared, “Molluscum is a skin infection that is caused by a virus known as the molluscum contagiosum virus entering through small openings in the skin barrier.” It exhibits up as “small, raised lesions that are usually pink or white in color.” The measurement of the bumps varies and might be as massive as six millimeters, in keeping with Dr. Chen. Another hallmark of molluscum is that the lesions have a “dip” or “dimple” within the heart, and the bumps—which might be on any of the pores and skin’s floor–might be “itchy, inflamed, or tender to the touch.” If you’re considering wherever? The reply is sure, the dreaded rash may even be in genitals.
How molluscum spreads
Unfortunately, we discovered molluscum to be extremely contagious and simply unfold on one’s personal pores and skin. Dr. Chen shares that molluscum is unfold “by direct physical contact.” For adults, that’s typically sexual exercise. For youngsters and between youngsters and adults, it may be by sharing contaminated objects corresponding to towels. Then there’s the one that already has molluscum spreading it themselves, throughout themselves. If an individual touches a lesion on their pores and skin, then touches one other space of their physique, there might be self-infection.
What can a father or mother do if their little one has molluscum?
Though all of us love a superb web mommy group “diagnosis,” Dr. Chen desires us to take our children to an precise physician, like their pediatrician, for a correct prognosis and therapy plan. The sooner, the higher. We want to forestall spreading by overlaying “new lesions with a bandage and have your child shower and wash their hands frequently.” She provides that it’s essential to clean the kid’s sheets and towels, in addition to any surfaces the kid possible touched.
What’s the therapy choices for molluscum?
Dr. Chen shares that often no therapy is critical. An individual with regular immunity will battle the virus, however sadly, it could possibly take a very long time. In instances the place the lesions are massive and present up in areas such because the individual’s face, neck, or genitals, a visit to the dermatologist might be useful. There are choices, together with cryotherapy—which freezes the bumps. Additionally, there are prescription topical ointments that may be useful. There are additionally some pure helps together with oatmeal baths, which scale back irritation and that horrible itch-factor. She additionally suggests coconut oil for moisturization and irritation discount.
What about faculty and extracurriculars?
If mollusucm is very contagious, does the contaminated little one want to remain residence till the lesions are gone? Thankfully, Dr. Chen says no. However, you do have to cowl the lesions, the kid nonetheless must often wash their palms, and so they shouldn’t contact others. She provides, “A mollusca is no longer contagious when it becomes a scab rather than a raised lesion with an indent in the middle.” Unfortunately, even after the bump does have a scab, molluscum could be a cussed beast, staying “on the skin for upwards of a year.”
Can adults get molluscum?
The quick reply is sure. It’s extra generally recognized amongst youngsters, however “adults with weaker immune systems” are actually in danger. Typically in adults, the immune system fights “off the virus before the lesions appear—but not always. She also remarks that “most adults tend to contract molluscum through sexual activities.”
Can an individual get molluscum greater than as soon as?
Yup. Here’s the way it works, in keeping with Dr. Chen. “If new lesions appear after your past molluscum has cleared, it means that you have become infected with a new molluscum contagiosum virus from a different person or object.” Yikes.
At what level ought to we see a dermatologist?
Dr. Chen advises that when molluscum turns into “extremely inflamed or itchy” and causes discomfort, it’s time to see a derm. A dermatologist can do an intensive examination to see the extent of the unfold. If crucial, they’ll prescribe drugs to assist when OTC treatments aren’t chopping it.
Dr. Chen says that oldsters shouldn’t panic if their child contracts molluscum. Know what it appears like so it could possibly shortly be recognized, then get your little one to the physician for a correct prognosis and therapy plan. Be conscious that molluscum is very contagious and precautions are suggested. If you or your little one has a case that will get out of hand, a dermatologist can come to the rescue.