Common Adult Skin Problems

What are skin problems?

The experience of the skin turning itchy, oozy, or breaking out is a sign of a skin problem. The occurrence of moles, rashes, hives, and eczema are a few skin problems. There are more than 3,000 skin disorders that affect people every day, regardless of their cast, creed or sex. Changes in color or texture can result in the formation of problems like inflammation, infection, or allergic reactions, this can happen anywhere on the body, or the entire body. Skin conditions can range from being  minor, temporary, and can be treated easily – to some conditions that can can be very severe, and can even prove to be deadly.

Read on as this article takes you through the signs, symptoms and identification of the most common skin disorders.

Shingles (Herpes Zoster)

Herpes zoster is also known as shingles. It is caused by the reoccurrence of the chickenpox infection from the latently infected nerve cells in the spinal cord or brain. The beginning of the condition is a painful sensation which is often mistaken for a musculoskeletal injury. This symptom is soon followed by a red, blistering unilateral (one-sided) rash that is usually distributed to the skin supplied by a sensory nerve (a dermatome) within one or two days of exposure. Herpes Zoster tends to occur mostly in elderly people. The disease can be prevented with a vaccination. Treating the condition with antiviral drugs within 48 hours of the onset of the eruption, controls the development of a persistent and severe pain (neuralgia) on the affected area.

Hives (Urticaria)

Hives is a problematic skin condition, and is also known as urticaria. Hives is a commonly occurring allergy of the skin which is caused when the antibodies present in the bloodstream recognize foreign chemicals. This eruption of painful bumps appears suddenly anywhere on the body. These bumps are usually surrounded by intensely itchy red rashes. The condition brings about several lesions, but each lesion only lasts for eight to 12 hours of time. As older lesions resolve, newer ones tend to develop. The condition of urticaria resolves spontaneously within a time frame of eight weeks and can be treated by the use of oral antihistamines that offer symptomatic relief.


Psoriasis is a chronic, genetic inflammatory condition. Patients suffering from this condition are subject to the development of scaling red bumps that band together to form plaques which may typically occur and spread across, affecting the whole body ( elbows, knees, neck being common areas). There is no specific cure for psoriasis; its occurrence and eradication is natural. There are a variety of treatments that can help getting relief from the condition depending on the severity and extent of involvement of the problem. The condition can be treated with topical creams and ultraviolet light exposure, oral drugs and injectable medications as well. Patients suffering with psoriasis tend to develop cardiovascular diseases, which may be the contributing factor to system-wide inflammation.


Eczema, which is also called Atopic dermatitis in medical language, is a genetic condition that shows up in early childhood of a person. The condition showcases a chronic itchy, weeping, oozing dermatitis. It usually tends to affect the arm creases opposite the elbow and the leg creases opposite the knee. Most patients can also suffer from inhalant allergies such as asthma and hay fever. The severity of the condition improves with the age of the affected. Unlike most cases, not all of those affected with eczema, have an allergy to a specific substance. This allergy does not seem to play a role the occurrence of flares of skin rashes.

The treatment of eczema involves the application of emollients to wet skin. It also involves the occasional use of topical steroids.


Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory condition that affects the face. It is characterized by redness, dilated blood vessels, papules, pustules, and can occasionally be characterized by the overgrowth of nasal connective tissue (rhinophyma). The condition may superficially resemble teenage acne, but it occurs in adults as well. Persistent facial flushing can be observed as an early sign of the skin’s uncontrolled sensitivity to some naturally produced inflammatory chemicals.

The treatment of rosacea involves the use of topical and oral drugs.

Cold Sores (Fever Blisters)

The condition of Herpes labialis or cold sore is caused by the notorious herpes simplex virus. Cold sores commonly affect the edge of the lip. Even in an infected person, this virus exists in the system in dormant state in the nerve cells of the spinal cord. The virus is induced to travel along a peripheral nerve to the same skin site over and over again, after certain environmental triggers like sunburn or a cold. The eruption may last up to seven to 10 days, and may ease out on its own.

The treatment of this condition is to be considered only if the eruptions become too frequent.

Plant Rashes

The term refers to rashes that occur as a result of a person being allergic to certain plant properties. Plant rashes refer to the development of a linear blistering eruption that occurs within 24-48 hours of exposure to a plant that belongs to the poison ivy or poison oak family of plants. The plants belonging to such plants contain highly allergenic chemicals, which cause most people to become allergic after a single priming exposure. The eruption usually resolves within a period of three weeks but reoccurs every time the skin comes in contact with the plant.

Treatment of Plant Rashes involves repeated application of cool and wet compresses to the blisters followed by evaporation of the water can be soothing and a way of healing them quickly. Treatment of severe cases of plant rashes may require the use of steroids creams. The allergy is a permanent phenomenon, i.e., once a person gets this kind of allergy, it is permanent. To avoid the occurrence of this very unpleasant allergic reaction, one must keep away from this plant family assiduously. Many people who are allergic to Toxicodendron also tend to sensitive to mango skin and cashew nut oil.

Now that you know of the commonly occurring skin conditions, you need not panic is you suffer from one. With the right treatment and lifestyle these can be averted. The symptoms of these conditions can be controlled by the consult of a doctor, or specialist.

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