paediatric dermatology


From infancy to adolescence, children can suffer from a variety of skin conditions that range in severity. These may include rashes, hives, warts and even acne; most are caused by bacterial or viral infections, while others may be due to dermatitis or other diseases. Treatment usually involves anti-itch creams, pain relievers or antibiotics, depending on the situation.

Knowing that children have unique skin needs, parents understand the importance of finding skincare products specifically designed for their kids. A child’s skin can easily become irritated and inflamed due to hormonal fluctuations between the ages of 8-12 and during puberty at 13-15. This often causes a struggle with moisture control, leaving them feeling uncomfortably dry or overly oily. During their teenage years, children’s skin is often prone to acne breakouts. Less commonly, vitiligo (a pigment disorder), irregular moles and viral/bacterial/fungal infections can also occur. Fortunately, most of these issues are temporary disturbances that will disappear in just a few weeks due to the body finding its equilibrium again.

Generally, skin issues in children are harmless and may resolve naturally. However, some cases necessitate a visit to an experienced dermatologist for proper diagnosis and treatment.

Frequently Asked Questions

Hives, more formally known as “Urticaria”, are small or large welts that can appear anywhere on your baby’s skin. Hives are often present in various shapes, such as spots and rings; they usually have an itchy pinkish-red hue. These unsightly bumps may be slightly raised above their surrounding areas, resembling targets – this is why some people call them “target hives”.

The rings may have seemingly healthy skin in the centre or look pale, blue or purple. They can appear anywhere on your child’s body and flatten over several hours; however, new bumps might persist for days or weeks.

An array of things, such as viral infections, allergies to foods and medications, exposure to cold temperatures or stress, can cause hives. In some cases, however, it’s difficult to determine what is causing them. The most effective way of treating hives is through antihistamines which control the presence of histamine levels in your body – one of the main causes of developing hives.

Wart, a skin infection occur due to the human papillomavirus (HPV), are an incredibly common skin condition among children. There are various types of HPV that can cause infection in different areas of your child’s body. These infections will result in hard lumps or bumps forming on their skin.

Unfortunately, warts are common for children of any age and can manifest themselves on the hands, feet, face, genitals or knees. While these warts may appear bothersome and painful to your child’s skin, they often resolve without intervention as the immune system fights off the virus that causes them.

There are two primary varieties of birthmarks – Red and Pigmented. The former is caused by an accumulation of blood vessels, while the latter exhibits a hue that deviates from your child’s skin colour. 

  1. Red birthmarks

When it comes to red birthmarks, you can be assured knowing they pose no harm whatsoever; their captivating features often lend themselves as signature characteristics for many young children.

  • Strawberry hemangiomas: Strawberry hemangiomas, formed from a mass of small blood vessels, are commonly found on babies’ faces, scalps, backs or chests. Fortunately, these growths usually diminish or disappear as your child age – however, some minor discolouration and wrinkling may remain in the affected area for years to come.
  • Cavernous hemangiomas: Cavernous hemangiomas, while similar in appearance to strawberry hemangiomas, are typically darker and located deeper within the skin. These spongy masses of tissue appear as reddish-blue bumps that are filled with blood. Fortunately, these types of tumours usually disappear without treatment as your child ages.
  • Port-wine stains: Port-wine stains are present as distinctive, flat patches of reddish-purple discolouration on the skin. These birthmarks are formed by dilated blood capillaries and mostly appear on children’s faces. Unfortunately, port-wine stains do not fade away without treatment; in fact, they often become darker or thicker with age.
  • Salmon patches: Also known as stork bites or angel’s kisses, salmon patches are common among infants. These harmless red blotches occur where small blood vessels have become slightly visible through the baby’s skin and can be found on the forehead, eyelids, upper lip between the eyebrows and often along the back of their neck. As your infant grows older, these distinctive birthmarks will eventually fade away.

  1. Pigmented birthmarks
  • Slate gray nevus or congenital dermal melanocytosis: previously called “Mongolian spots”, these spots are usually a bluish hue and may appear like bruises, most commonly located on your infant’s buttocks or lower back. They can also be seen on the chest, arms and even their backs. These birthmarks tend to be more visible in babies with darker skin tones.
  • Pigmented nevi: Pigmented nevi, more commonly known as moles, are small growths on your baby’s skin that often range in colour from flesh-coloured to brown or black. They may sprout up anywhere and could be isolated or clustered together.
  • Congenital nevi: Congenital nevi, or moles that your baby was born with, may have a slightly heightened potential of developing into skin cancer. Larger congenital nevi tend to be more likely than smaller ones. To ensure the safety of your child’s health, it is advised for you to consult with a dermatologist about any present congenital nevi on your baby’s body.
  • Cafe-au-lait spots: Café-au-lait spots are typically classified by their light tan or brownish hues and oval shape. Most often, these marks appear at birth but can sometimes form in a child’s early years of development. Usually, they are harmless; however, if your kid has multiple café-au-lait spots that are fairly large, you should seek medical advice as it could be an indication of a complicated genetic disorder.

Dr Miller is here to help

dr natalie miller

Dr. Natalia Miller

When it comes to skin conditions in children, a visit to a dermatologist who has a wealth of experience treating young patients can make all the difference – and Dr Miller is just that! Being a mother herself, you can be sure your child will receive only the best care.

At your visit with Dr Miller, she will evaluate your child’s medical history and carefully analyse their skin to make an accurate diagnosis. Afterwards, she’ll explain the findings of her assessment and provide you with treatment options that best fit your family’s needs. She will start procedures once making sure these treatments are suitable for your children first.