You must have encountered those tiny little white bumps which are so stubborn in nature that they remain persistently attached to your skin despite all your efforts at maintaining high degrees of cleanliness. They occur when the dead skin cells instead of exfoliation gets trapped beneath the skin, appearing as white dots. They transform into tiny cysts and usually resolve on their own. However, at times they do require intervention. It is usually seen on cheeks, nose, eyes, neck, forehead and chest areas. They are more common in babies. It is usually presented as a tiny cyst containing protein keratin.
Discriminating milia and whiteheads
A white head is lodged much deeper into the skin, looks like bumps and is also known as congested skin. Chin, hairline, cheeks or sides of the mouth are its favorite harbors.
Milia, on the other hand, looks like white blackheads. They are more firm in nature and are immune to prodding with nails or fingers. Marking its presence beneath eyes and cheeks, they are usually a result of overconsumption of dairy or due to the curse of genetics.
Types of milia
- Neonatal – seen in newborns around eyes, cheeks, mouth and inside the mouth. they originate from sweat glands.
- Primary – occurs in both children and adults.
- Secondary– they proliferate in areas of the body which have been damaged before.
- Milia en plaque- the form on the inflamed, reddened and elevated area behind ears, eyelids or jaw.
- Multiple eruptive milia– appears in crops on the upper arm, face or upper trunk.