If milia have you bothered, there are a few things that you can do at home that may make them go away sooner. A doctor can quickly determine the severity of your milia just by looking at the cysts. The good news is that milia in the least severe form need no attention at all.
Primary milia -- the kind babies get -- don't require a doctor's visit unless the condition lasts longer than a few months. The bumps commonly disappear within a few weeks [source: CNN]. If your doctor says you can go without medical treatment, there are a few things that you can do to lessen the symptoms.
To start, stop using some of your usual lotions or makeup removers. This will minimize the spread of the bumps while you're waiting for the condition to pass. The oily products are especially problematic. Anything non-comedogenic is probably better, but if possible, it's probably best to avoid using products or exfoliating procedures on the areas where you notice milia developing.
If your doctor says that you have a case of secondary milia, you may get a prescription for a retinoid cream. He might also remove the bumps with a scalpel followed by a special tool called a comedone extractor. Also, your doctor may recommend fruit acid peels and other procedures such as microdermabrasion [source: Skin Sight].
No matter the severity or location, milia affect people of every ethnicity and background, and can appear at any age. It may look like a bad case of acne, which can be really annoying, but the cysts are treatable and preventable. Visit the sources on the following page for more information on caring for your skin.
Related HowStuffWorks Articles
- Agrawal, Ruchir. "Milia: Treatment and Medication." eMedicine. 3/13/09. (Accessed 8/18/09)http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/910405-treatment
- American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. "Bullous Pemphigoid." 2009. (Accessed 8/18/09) http://www.aocd.org/skin/dermatologic_diseases/bullous_pemphigoid.html
- CNNhealth. "Milia." 3/21/08. (Accessed 8/18/09) http://www.cnn.com/HEALTH/library/milia/DS01059.html
- Cooper, Susan. "Milia." eMedicine. 5/6/08. (Accessed 8/18/09)http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1058063-overview
- MacReady, Norra. "Minimally Invasive Aesthetic Procedures: Implications for Plastic Surgeons." Medscape Dermatology. 6/30/08. (Accessed 8/18/09)http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/576655
- MedlinePlus. "Milia." 6/2/09. (Accessed 8/18/09) http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001367.htm
- The New York Times. "Milia." 4/12/07. (Accessed 8/18/09)http://health.nytimes.com/health/guides/disease/milia/overview.html
- Skin Sight. "Milia in Adults." 12/22/08. (Accessed 8/18/09)http://www.skinsight.com/adult/milia.htm
- University of Maryland Medical Center. "Milia." 4/12/07. (Accessed 8/18/09)http://www.umm.edu/ency/article/001367.htm
- Women's Healthcare Topics. "Baby Acne." (Accessed 9/17/09)http://www.womenshealthcaretopics.com/baby_acne.htm