What causes perioral dermatitis?

The exact causes of perioral dermatitis remain somewhat elusive, but several factors are believed to contribute to its development. One prominent factor is the prolonged use of topical steroids, including those found in various skincare products. Additionally, the use of heavy face creams, or hormonal changes such as those occurring during pregnancy or with the use of oral contraceptives may play a role. There is also a potential link to a disrupted skin barrier function and the presence of certain microorganisms. While the precise trigger may vary among individuals, discontinuing the use of topical steroids and identifying and avoiding potential irritants are commonly recommended steps in managing and preventing perioral dermatitis outbreaks. Seeking guidance from a dermatologist is crucial for accurate diagnosis and tailored treatment plans.


Symptoms of perioral dermatitis

Perioral dermatitis manifests with distinctive symptoms primarily affecting the facial region. Characterized by the appearance of small, red, and bumpy papules, these lesions typically cluster around the mouth, nose, and eyes. The rash may reveal a slightly raised or scaly texture, accompanied by mild itching or burning sensations. In some cases, the skin surrounding the lesions may appear dry or flaky. Importantly, perioral dermatitis tends to spare the skin bordering the lips, creating a characteristic “zone of sparing.” While the severity of symptoms can vary, individuals experiencing persistent or worsening skin issues in these facial areas should seek prompt evaluation by a dermatologist for accurate diagnosis and appropriate management.

Treatment options for perioral dermatitis.

The treatment of perioral dermatitis typically involves a multifaceted approach aimed at addressing both the underlying causes and alleviating symptoms. A crucial step often involves discontinuing the use of topical steroids, as their prolonged application can contribute to the development or exacerbation of the condition. We will recommend a gentle skincare routine, avoiding heavy moisturisers and opting for mild, fragrance-free products. Oral antibiotics, such as tetracycline or doxycycline, are commonly prescribed to effectively reduce inflammation and control the overgrowth of certain microorganisms associated with perioral dermatitis. In some cases, topical medications like metronidazole or clindamycin may be helpful. Patients are advised to maintain good facial hygiene, avoid triggers such as fluoride toothpastes, and be mindful of potential irritants. Regular follow-ups with our team at Oxona ensures proper monitoring of the condition’s progress and allow for adjustments to the treatment plan as needed for optimal results.

Treatment Options

How much does it cost?

For an initial diagnosis and treatment plan, we suggest you book a ‘skin diagnosis and treatment’ appointment. You will have 30 minutes with one of our doctors to set you on the path to a better skin.  Currently this cost £185.  You can book this appointment using our online booking tool, by ringing the clinic,  emailing us or filling in a contact form.  We always endeavour to get back to you within 24 hours, and can usually book you to see one of our doctors within a few days.


What sort of appointment should I make?

Your first appointment should be a 30 minute ‘skin diagnosis and treatment’  appointment. Subsequent appointments can usually be 15 minute follow up appointments.

Can I claim for my appointment on insurance?

You need to speak to your insurer prior to your appointment. Some insurers will reimburse you for the appointment, but you will need to present any documentation at the time of your appointment for the doctor to sign. Please note that all our doctors are registered with the GMC on the GP register not the consultant register. Please ensure you make this clear to your insurers at the outset.

How it works

From the moment you book your appointment to post-treatment care, we’re here to support you.

  • Booking your appointment
    With Oxona, there’s no need for a referral and you can book your appointment online, over the phone or by email. All appointments require a pre-paid deposit due at the time of booking.
  • Consultation
    Our specialists will give you the time you need to discuss your problem, making sure you are truly heard. Your questions will be answered with understanding and impartial advice, so you feel ready to make an informed decision.
  • Treatment plan
    Our treatment plans are based on you as an individual, rather than off the shelf. Taking into account your symptoms, medical history and any anxieties, we’ll explore all available options and respect your decisions.
  • Aftercare
    Your care doesn’t end after your treatment. Our team are on hand to offer free post-operative support, and to answer any questions about your treatment plan.
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