East Tennessee Pediatric Dermatology
Skincare for Children
Pediatric dermatologists treat skin, hair and nail problems and diseases
in babies, children, teens and young adults. The most common diseases
pediatric dermatologists treat are acne, eczema, psoriasis, warts, and vitiligo.
East Tennessee Children’s Hospital’s dermatology specialist is
Sophia Jody Hendrick, M.D. You can reach her for questions by calling (865) 524-7107.
Acne is caused by the build-up of oil, dead skin cells and bacteria in
the skin. Teenagers often get acne when hormones become active during
puberty. The chance your child will get acne is increased if it runs in
Even though many teens get acne, it does not need to be ignored. Severe
acne can have harsh effects on your teenager's self-image and self-esteem.
Pediatric dermatologists understand that acne is tied to appearance and
confidence. They will try to create a plan that will ease your child through
this difficult period.
Eczema is a dry skin rash that appears in the form of dry scaly skin or
tiny red bumps on the skin. It usually appears on the scalp, face and
at joints, but can spread to other parts of the body. About 20% of babies
and children develop the condition. It may be inherited and can be worsened
by allergies and asthma.
During an eczema flare-up, skin may feel hot and itchy. Your child may
scratch so much that their skin becomes tougher and darker in color. Flare-ups
can be caused by environmental allergens and emotional stress.
Eczema may be treated with prescription ointments and pills. The condition
cannot be cured, but flare-ups can be prevented. Eczema usually clears
up before age 25.
Children with vitiligo have loss of skin pigment, which causes white patches
to appear on their skin. No one knows why this happens. It affects people
of both sexes and all races. The condition is not medically dangerous.
Our pediatric dermatologists can diagnose vitiligo by looking at the skin.
There is no cure for vitiligo. Some patches resolve without treatment,
but many require ultraviolet treatment, creams and cosmetics. Your dermatologist
will create a plan that will best treat your child's condition.
Even though vitiligo is not medically dangerous to your child, it can affect
their self-esteem and self-confidence. Counselors and other resources
are available to your child if they are experiencing withdrawal, depression
or anxiety in relation to their vitiligo.
Psoriasis causes skin cells to build up on the surface of the skin. The
build-up forms itchy red patches and thick scales most commonly on the
scalp, knees, elbows and torso. It is a chronic condition that may disappear
and come back at random.
If your child has psoriasis, they may have the following symptoms:
- Red patches of skin with silvery scales
- Dry, cracked skin that may bleed
- Itching, soreness or a burning sensation
- Thick fingernails
The dermatologist will inspect your child's skin, scalp and nails.
Sometimes, they will remove a small piece of skin to conduct a biopsy
on it. The treatment for psoriasis includes creams and ointments. It can
also be improved by changes in lifestyle, including eating better, improved
hygiene habits and spending time in natural light.