Perioral Dermatitis

Perioral Dermatitis is an inflammatory skin condition often found in females 20 to 35 years old although it can occur at any age. Less commonly, males can be affected but no matter who it affects or at what age, it can cause misery for many.

Sometimes due to a rebound effect from steroids- either topical, nasal (like flonase) or even steroid inhalers, the symptoms typically start around the mouth, chin or nose. Redness and flaky dry skin can occur with bumps and symptoms can fluctuate from day to day. The symptoms can also spread to the eye lids or around the eyes.

Many things can make Perioral Dermatitis flare including SLS in toothpaste, PMS, harsh skin care products, sunlight, emotions or fragrances. If you’re suffering with Perioral Dermatitis, often it is recommended to stick with plain water to wash your face and use a very simple moisturizer. Years ago I formulated lonicera clearing oil for a patient suffering with this frustrating condition, and it along with internal Chinese herbal medicine helped to heal her skin completely only a few weeks.

In Chinese Medicine, Perioral Dermatitis is due to an imbalance in the liver or excess dampness and toxic heat accumulation in the stomach and spleen. When we treat this condition, we look at at that factors that could have caused this disharmony, the way the skin looks, and any other symptoms in the patient. We then form a diagnosis and precise herbal treatment to address not only the symptoms but also the cause.

Perioral Dermatitis responds very well to correct treatment with Chinese Medicine and often the condition can improve in 2-3 weeks. The herbs taste bad, but they are not to be taken forever and the effects are absolutely worth it!

Dr. Dilks custom blending Chinese Herbal Medicine for a patient.

Dr. Dilks custom blending Chinese Herbal Medicine for a patient.

The DIY Beauty Treatment You're Missing Out On: Facial Gua Sha

The alluring empresses and concubines in ancient China held many beauty secrets. From beautiful floral waters to herbal masks, to facial massage and steams, skin care was a way of life. We still use many of these time tested techniques today.


One facial massage technique (that you may have never heard of) is on the verge of becoming mainstream. Known as Gua Sha (literally skin scraping), it’s gaining huge popularity with celebrity facialists in the green beauty movement and for good reason.

The benefits of facial Gua Sha include relaxing muscle tension, smoothing the connective tissue, reducing wrinkles, and improving lymphatic flow to decrease puffiness. In 2007, a German study found that Gua Sha improves blood circulation to the skin by over 400%! It instantly rejuvenates the skin cells for a healthy glow.

Do you want to know the best part? You can learn to do it yourself! Facial gua sha uses a flat jade tool to apply a gentle, cooling massage. With the proper technique, you can spend 5-10 minutes after cleansing your skin at night, and you’ll see some incredible benefits over time. You can check out tutorials online or attend a live workshop at Emerging Energy Acupuncture in Providence 12/4! Schedule online today- limited spaces remain.

This post was first published on 3 time "Best of RI" Lifestyle