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Perioral Dermatitis or Periorificial Dermatitis (POD)

Updated on August 23, 2017

Perioral Dermatitis or Periorificial Dermatitis (POD)

This is my journey of overcoming Perioral Dermatitis or Periorificial Dermatitis (POD). I am searching to find natural cures for anyone else looking for natural answers, as well as for my self (yes, that is my modeling picture head shot). I will let you know what I have found that works and what does not work. If you have the answer, I will pay you a dollar! :) But seriously, please share! I am going to explain what doctors say Perioral Dermatitis is and what I have found in my independent research about irritants and what causes it. At the end of the day, I hope to do a final blog, really really really soon on how I got a clear face and post a picture of clear skin.

07.03.12

What is Perioral Dermatitis

What's wrong with your face?

What is Perioral Dermatitis or Periorificial Dermatitis (POD)? Muzzle Disease. Seriously, that's the nickname. Nice, huh? Webmd.com defines it as, "a facial rash that causes bumps to develop around the mouth. In some cases, a similar rash may appear around the eyes, nose, or forehead.The condition is most commonly seen in young women (90% of cases), but it can affect men as well."

At first I thought I had fever blisters between my upper lip and nose. Then it spread to my jaw line and all around my mouth. I was a few months into switching to organic food, and thought maybe it was detox. Then, 2 months later it decided to visit my eyes. Under, next to and then the lids. Then, I thought for sure I had an allergy. The dermatologist diagnosed it as Periorificial Dermatitis.

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How do you get Perioral Dermititis?

Like Webmd.com and many other sites, as well as the dermatologist that I saw, they all say that they are not quite sure how you get this other than a reaction to a topical steroid cream. My own research showed theories of fluoride. Great, that is in your water AND your toothpaste. Others said that it's a chemical called sodium laureth sulphate that is in shampoo, toothpaste, laundry detergent, soap, and so on. Hmmm, my hygene is about to struggle. I read about staying out of the sun, avoiding spicy foods, caffene and alcohol. Well, there goes vacation!

More natural research posed that hormone shifts was a factor, which makes sense to me with mostly younger women getting it and hmmm, I just had a baby. I've also read that it is a result of yeast overgrowth in your body (Candida). Stress was to blame in one article. But I think everyone has some level of stress and I don't see their face looking like this! So although it remains a mystery on how you get it, I'm more determined to find the, "how do I leave it in my past?"

07.03.12

My Story

Welcome to holistic life learning!

Around Christmas 2011 I got a few blister-like bumps under my skin between my nose and upper lip. I thought that maybe I had fever blisters. They hung around for FOR-EV-ER! We stared eating organic in February as well as chiropractic care and looking at alternative medical care. This was a whole new learning process of how your body was born to do a lot more self-healing than we give it credit for. BUT it takes time. So I didn't do anything about my face and those little bumps spread.

Being new to the organic life, I was a bit put out. I mean, hey, we are healthier right? I've been eating good for 3 weeks! LOL! Obviously, now that I am learning more, I know that I have a lifetime of damage to undo down to the root cells of my being. Also, we live in a demanding spoiled society of getting answers and resolutions NOW. With synthetic medicine, we get relief within a week, what is up with this natural stuff!?! Wow, did I grow through this process! Have you ever heard, "Don't pray for patience unless you realllllly are ready"? Growth is hard, but worth it. And natural healing does take time, especially when your immune system ha been severely compromise from chemicals, anti-biotics and other enviromental toxins.

Next, I thought that maybe I was detoxing. Your skin is the largest organ, and your face is the most sensitive so this brought me a little relief and ability to practice that patience. The holistic chiropractor that I was seeing was encouraging to let my body do it's thing. Fortunately, we had just moved to a new state and I was ok with hibernation. Then, it got worse and spread.

Now, during this time, I was also healing naturally from SEVERE Postpartum depression and getting off those meds by compensating with high quality, filtered, veggie based, no filler vitamins like Vitamin D, Omega 3, Green multi-vitamin, and pro-biotics (This success story will be another Lens). I also was sleeping in 2 hour intervals due to a baby AND my 2 year old having seizures. Hubby works where he cannot take his cell in nor does he have a desk phone and I have no family around to help. And did I mention I was hibernating and didn't know anyone. Don't feel sorry for me though, I say this in humor and although it is factual, I have overcome SO many ugly things in my heart this year, that the situation is nothin' but a G- thang baby! :)

My exhaustion and the above situation brought out the U-G-L-Y in me. Shew, I am embarrassed, but I am so much better for it. I continued to press in on my health. Every time I thought about a chocolate filled croissant, I was instantly checked in fear that my face would literally explode. I lost 30 lbs in 2 months just by changing to organic, only brown rice products and a little less protein than normal (yep, another planned Lens). This was to lower my acidic levels. I digress. My face worsened and all I could say to explain it over the phone was that I had a muzzle rash. Little did I know that, that was exactly what I had.

My next thought was that I was allergic to the house we moved into a month before this started. I took a weekend trip 3 hours away and my face started to clear up and upon my return home, BAM! Explosion. My patience with my body's healing process came to a screeching halt! I poured through websites looking for answers. I saw allergy pics similar to what I had and came across Shingles, Candida, Poison something (Oak or Ivy) and felt more frustrated than ever. I knew through my exploration that fever blisters do not last 5 months. So thankfully it was not that and I could resume kissing on my babies. Shingles follows the nerve lines and do not cross over the mid section of the body to the exact same spot on the other side. In other words, the rash could be on my forehead and would stop at the middle of my body. Another rash could be on my cheek and also stop at the middle. This was not me. I had it everywhere from the nostrils down to my jawline. Detox does not itch or have some of the other symptoms, so I was back to being clueless.

In June, I traveled with my husband for work for 10 days JUST KNOWING I would be avoiding the allergy in the new home and my face would be normal again. In short, NOPE! It got worse. The picture at the top of this Lens was taken in the hotel. There you see that it spread to my eyes and had actually been at my eyes for awhile. Believe it or not, this was not the worst of it though. I still may have an allergy, but when I broke down and went to the dermatologist (since I do not have a naturopathic doctor within 3 hours of me) she diagnosed me before the door shut behind her! (No kidding!)

First of all, I could not believe how long it took to get an appointment. I literally called EVERY doc on my insurance plan and there was a 2 month wait! And the last one I called (literally, last doc on the list) took me in 3 weeks. It was like Christmas morning for me going to find out from a professional what was going on with my skin! I made sure they did allergy testing and was quite confident that they were going to do patch tests to get to the root of it. That Christmas morning feeling quickly felt like a funeral. She spent 2 minutes with me. She walked in and seriously before the door closed, she said, "OH MY! You have some serious Periorialfacial Dermatitis" as she reached out and rubbed on the patch on the corner of my eye in sympathy. She turned around pulled up google to show me other pictures (that I had actually seen myself but didn't think I had THAT rash). She asked me if I had come in contact with a steroid cream. Followed by 2, "are you sure?" questions with the tone that, I am an idot. LOL. I said, "listen, I eat organic, my shampoo is organic, I stopped wearing make up and washing my face 3 months ago. And prior to that, nothing changed in my products except switching over to natural. But when that switch happened, I had already had the rash for awhile." Of course I asked what else could have caused it. This is where I felt defeated because she said, "we don't know. Take this cream and I cannot prescribe anything because of you nursing and it could be harmful to him." Nice. Meds that you just admitted are harmful. No thanks.

I did leave in tears. So many things on the inside of me were being healed physically, spiritually and emotionally, "when will my face show it?"

So my journey continues. I'm not defeated because at least now, I have a diagnosis and I WILL find an answer, for all of us :) I am saving up my pennies to go see a Natural Doctor 3 hours away, but until then, I'll share what natural resources I've found through other blogs.

7.4.12 - Happy Independence Day! Ironic that I wrote about this today as I look for freedom!

Trial #1
Trial #1

Searching for Natural Remedies for Periorificial Dermatitis

Trial #1

This regimen started on 6.22.12 while out of town:

Twice a day rub Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar on all rash parts until burning stops. Although it never stopped so I did it for 5 minutes or so. You do not want to leave it in one spot for toooo long or it will burn your skin. (I now am naturally removing 2 flash colored moles off my face due to leaving it on too long.) Follow with Calandula Cream (by California Baby) and a organic, no filler added vitamin E both internal and topically. When I wash my face, I slab the raw honey (the hard thick butter looking kind) on my face and rinse it off in the shower.

The jawline is looking better. What you cannot see, is the fact that it seriously feels like sandpaper. Hubby tripped out when I made him feel my skin. My eyes have inflamed worse and I have new blisters under my nose again since returning to our home.

From all the forums about this remedy, everyone raved that their skin looked better in 3-5 days and at most a week. It's been 2 weeks. I will not give up, I will keep going and search for other remedies :)

07.04.12

Searching for Natural Remedies for Periorificial Dermatitis

Trial #2

Miessence. I'm trying the first certified organic skin care line. I'm all natural, so why not try all natural skin care products. Trial #1 worked good. BUT I have the patches by my eyes that have not diminished. I also had a patch come back out on my jawline. I started the Miessence skin care system 3 days ago. No decrease yet in the dermatitis, BUT my skin is looking good and feeling good. I will keep you posted on the progress of these products.

7.10.12

Me after using Caravanserai
Me after using Caravanserai

Searching for Natural Remedies for Periorificial Dermatitis

Trial #3

I know it has been quite a while since I've blogged about this. Trial #2 of Miessence made my skin feel great and look better, but the painful bumps were under the skin still. I had a break down at Earth Fare (our organic grocery store here in Augusta GA) and asked the person in the wellness section if she'd ever heard of POD. She hadn't. I said it was in the Rosacea family. Her tone changed as she knew all about Rosacea! She showed me scarring on her chest/neck from it, but her face looked A-MA-ZING! She took me over to a $4 dollar bar of soap that she swears by! I picked up a bar and started using it myself. It stings a bit. And it took me awhile before I would use it on my eyes. I made sure my eyes were tightly shut. I cannot remember if it cleared up in just a week or two weeks, but I went from the top image to the picture here! I have passed it on to a few people here privately and one has told me that her face has gotten better too.

They have no website, so you will have to contact them directly: icaravanserai@gmail.com

The brand is: Caravanserai and it is called "Traditional West African Black Soap". It has 5 natural ingredients. I am on my second bar of soap and love it! This works for me! FINALLY!

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    • profile image

      BlytheB 2 years ago

      Hello, I have perioral dermatitis to, but usually under control, but it does

    • profile image

      Anonymous 2 years ago

      Ive found its probably some sort of mite. Yuck... Believe me I know. After 2 yrs i finally started Urea cream, with metrogel and zinc oxide and it is FINALLY clearing up. The urea will break down the prtectivw biofilm arpund the offending organism which allows for other medocations to work. I hope im finally on to something as the docs have been useless.

    • profile image

      eric 2 years ago

      I bet half of these can be traced back to candida. A white tongue is a dead giveaway. What good is a medical diagnosis that doesn't implicate a causative agent? Ignoramus ex machina,

    • profile image

      mary 2 years ago

      try witch hazel and get tested for hemochromatosis an iron storage disease that is associated with some skin infections

    • profile image

      Ann Wood 2 years ago

      I had PD for 3 1/2 months. I used Desitin, took probiotics, drank lots of water and ate lots of fruits and veggies. I found a closed facebook group for ppl with Pereioral Dermititis. It is an amazing group, lots of helpful advice and support. Just search Perioral Dermatitis on Facebook

    • profile image

      Tracey 2 years ago

      I get this around my eyes mostly.To start, I used about 3 drops tea tree oil (found in vitamin aisle) mixed with 9 drops olive oil. It smells not the best but it works. Stings a little. Olive Oil has anti inflammatory properties and the tea tree oil naturally kills off bad bacteria...if you can stand to put more tea tree oil in your mixture go ahead and do so. Also, what helped in the case that you keep on getting it back see your doctor about getting on doxyclycline for 2 months 100mg a day.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      @createpink: I also live in Augusta, couldn't find that particular brand of soap but found 2 others. The ingredients on the others were different from each other. Was the soap you got in the aisle with all the other bar soaps?

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      @createpink: soap used once or twice a day? what moisturizer do you use after the soap? glad you are rid of POD and hoping I will be too soon

    • createpink profile image
      Author

      createpink 4 years ago

      I just wrote about a solution that I have had for 4 months or so :) It's my latest post, but in short:

      I found a bar of soap at my Organic Grocery "Earth Fare". The soap company does not have a website, so you will have to contact them directly: icaravanserai@gmail.com

      The brand is: Caravanserai and it is called "Traditional West African Black Soap". It has 5 natural ingredients. I am on my second bar of soap and love it! This works for me! FINALLY!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Hi Minj,

      I'm in NYC and would like to visit the doctor that help you. What is her name and is that office located at 909 Fifth Avenue? Thanks.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      skin balancing tonic & balm from m&r essentials!!! if you arent allergic to bees this is the stuff!!! seriously the only thing that works

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Hi! How are you now? English is not my first language so please have patience if you don't understand my poor skills. I've had this (pod) for almost 3 years, it can clear for months and then it returns. I've had bacterial infections in my intestines and I think that's where it starts.

      I am confident it comes from within and that it has to do with the immune system, as well as overall psychological health.

      I've tried the grape seed extract (internally and externally) and it helps, a little. I've tried coconut oil, capryllic acid, omega 3, zink, b-vitamins. These have not done anything for me. But I do think these vitamins/supplements can be helpful in the recovery. The best thing I've tried so far is Buckthorn oil, it literally helped me overnight. I take capsules in the morning before breakfast and after washing, with water only, I put the oil on my face.

      Just wanted to let you know, since I can feel the hurt of this dermatitis. Horrible!

      best wishes/ Sandra

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      i have had PD for over a year. Was on steroids for 9 months. went off and raged--it got so bad i couldn't eat or sleep and my face started to bleed. i tried everything yogurt, ACV, benedryl, destin, caladrin, etc...nothing worked....went to several "park avenue" doctors who wanted to give me more steroids,...NO THANK you.

      Finally, found 100% relief with a doctor in NYC. I am not on steroids, but anti histimines and on antibotics topically. She's angel part of Orentreich's office. I leave my house now.

    • createpink profile image
      Author

      createpink 4 years ago

      @anonymous: That is fantastic and will look into that IMMEDIATELY! Sorry for not replying earlier, i got stay at home job and have been swamped and not checked here like I thought I would be doing! It was SOOOOO thoughtful for you to come back! I spent thousands of hours looking for a solution and NEVER came across that one! You're the best and congrats on clearing up!!!

    • createpink profile image
      Author

      createpink 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Months of that crappy rash kind of ended with the treatment I described with the ACV, yogurt, diet, eliminating soaps with crap in them, etc. The eyes never swelled back up. I have had 3 small breakouts since I finally cleared it up. So for now I just continue the ACV/Calendula lotion every day. Yogurt once a day if I remember.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Hi Ronda. I'd like to know if you've had a change in your condition since July. I just discovered what my rash is called and have been looking for natural remedies. I just began a green tea/cider vinegar 1:1 solution twice a day. Any advice is welcome.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I posted here a while back be just wanted to say that I am finally clear after almost six years. I was clear for about a month while being on antibiotics but it returned. Being that I can't afford a dermatologist visit every couple month and also don't want to spend the rest of my life on doxycycline, I started looking into "natural antibiotics" and found grapefruit seed extract. I have been taking the nutribiotic brand in capsule form morning and night (125 Mgs) for about 2 weeks and my skin started clearing immediately. This was a miracle life/ money saver for me so I just thought I'd share. It's worth a try :) best of luck!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I was never formally diagnosed, but I am fairly sure that I've had POD for the last three years. I have a pretty mild case of it. It is pretty well confined to my nose and my chin, and it's mostly red splotches with a small quantity of pustules. It used to be much worse, and was even under my eyes for a bit, but I was recommended PAV by Natrhealth. You can google them, and they'll come up. I still have problems with dermatitis, but they are significantly better since I started to use this product. I don't know if it'll help you, but I hope you find something that works for you!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I was diagnosed with this "perioral dermatitis" nonsense as well, (basically meaning "rash around mouth".) Please check this site out if you haven't already. google "cellulite investigation" (It won't allow me to post the link here because it says my post looks like spam) anyway I strongly believe a large part of my skin condition was and IS directly related to fluoride. So I believe it is worth looking into. I'm glad to see more people on the internet posting about this. Good luck in your quest xo

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      i have had this for YEARS. 2 things worked to clear it for a few months at a time. One was a 3x a day wash and cream of, yes, Proactive.

      The second is Minocycline. 2 weeks worth and it was dosed 2x a day.

      I found that antifungal cream worked i used the .5% from walmart, to control it a bit - but not a cure by any means.

      Oily stuff makes it worse. so any of the moisture theories did not work but made it terrible. God.

      And guess what? My baby daughter has it now. yep 3 months now of baby peri oral. and I cannot give her Mino. And I have tried almost everything else. Poor poor kid has it so much worse than me. I took her off dairy and wheat and it receded a but - but not gone. Also noticed when she was very sick it went away very well! So tell me that its immune for sure. (The system was busy and then didn't have time to wreck her little face).

      Anyway, curious to see how it goes for you.

    • createpink profile image
      Author

      createpink 5 years ago

      @anonymous: I was several weeks postpartum when it started! Try the trial remedy #1 below. It takes time. But my skin is a lot better!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      My skin condition looks and feels the same! and I'm 12 weeks post partum!.... struggling big time.