Razor bumps, or pseudofolliculitis barbae, are a form of ingrown hair. It’s considered a medical condition where a hair grows back, downward into the skin instead of outward. The condition shows itself by one or more small bumps on the epidermis of the skin. Although many people suffer from this condition, not all cases are considered serious. In some instances, those who have chronic razor bumps may incorrectly assume that what they are experiencing is related to an allergic reaction, such as a rash. If you have chronic razor bumps, contact Metro Dermatology in New York for an appointment.
How Can You Tell if You Have Razor Bumps?
This condition differentiates itself from a rash in the following ways:
They don’t itch. If you have red bumps on your skin that are itching, it’s more likely a rash, and you should see a dermatologist.
They appear soon after shaving.
They don’t disappear after using a cream designed to treat rashes.
They can get red and inflamed, but they aren’t always red in color, particularly on individuals of African or Latin descent.
They can be painful to the touch.
What Causes Razor Bumps?
By far the single biggest cause of this skin condition is shaving. Using improper shaving techniques can cause the ingrown hairs that are referred to as razor bumps, but some people are more likely to experience razor bumps depending on genetics and skin condition. Our dermatologist can give you more information about the condition of your skin.
Can Razor Bumps Be Prevented?
Sometimes, yes. This condition may be prevented or reduced with the use of proper shaving techniques. First, always use a sharp, clean blade in any razor you use. Trying to get a “close shave” every time you shave can also increase your odds of getting razor bumps.
Try to allow the hair to grow longer in between shaves. This can prevent curly hairs from growing back into the follicle. Use a thick shaving foam or butter, and let it sit on the skin for several minutes before commencing with the shave. Shave in the direction of hair growth, not against it. Moisturize skin before, during and after shaving to help prevent bumps.
What if They Get Infected?
If your razor bumps are infected, are a chronic problem or are causing you emotional distress, make an appointment with our dermatologist to discuss treatment options.
Dermatologists have a host of treatment options available to care for victims of chronic or infected bumps. These include but are not limited to, laser resurfacing, laser hair removal, and antibacterial medicine. The key thing to remember about this condition is that it is almost always treatable at Metro Dermatology in Elmhurst, NY. Contact us today to schedule your consultation!