Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Acne Health Center

Font Size

Top Teen Skin Problems – and How To Solve Them

The teen years can be filled with angst – the last thing you need is troubled skin. WebMD asked the experts for solutions to the most common teen skin problems.

Teen Skin Problem No. 3: Excess Sweating continued...

When heavy sweating occurs on a regular basis, you may be experiencing what doctors call "hyperhidrosis." This condition is characterized by excessive sweating on the palms, soles, and underarms, and sometimes, the face.

"This can be a terribly isolating condition for a teen -- so much so that many won't it even bring it up their pediatrician or family doctor," says Resnik.

Treatment includes minimally invasive surgical treatments that target the sweat glands, as well as Botox -- the same substance used as a wrinkle treatment. In this case, tiny amounts of the purified botulinum A toxin is injected into sweat glands to block the release of a neurotransmitter or brain chemical called acetycholine, which is linked to sweating.

The treatment lasts up to eight months, and can be repeated.

In addition, the American Academy of Dermatology also offers these tips to control excess perspiration:

  • Wear natural fibers like cotton, which are cooler and absorb sweat.
  • Use absorbent inner soles and try to alternate shoes, leaving a day in between wearings so they can dry out.
  • Avoid foods and drinks that seem to trigger sweating. These are different for everybody, but some doctors say they may include spicy dishes, or very hot liquids such as soups.

Finally, for the most severe cases of hyperhidrosis, surgery can be performed on the nerve bundles that control sweating. This is very specialized surgery, usually available only at major medical centers.

Teen Skin Problem No. 4: Warts

If you find yourself stuffing your hands in your pockets every chance you get, you may be trying to hide warts. These fleshy colored, or sometimes dark, lumps and bumps can grow under fingernails, on your fingers, on the backs of the hands, or on the soles of the feet. Caused by a virus, doctors say warts seems to impact teens the most.

"Warts are very common in teen years, and happen at a time when even a minor imperfection can seem to cause major problems," says Schlessinger.

There are many treatments for warts, says Schlesinger. They include freezing the growths with liquid nitrogen, or burning them off with a laser or a chemical treatment. While the treatments sometimes work, warts can come back.

The best way to avoid getting warts is to avoid biting your nails or injuring your hands. Skin that is injured appears to be more susceptible to the wart viruses.

Most warts go away without any treatment within about two years. And warts are not dangerous. But if you have warts that disturb you, your primary health care practitioner can discuss various treatment options with you.

Teen Skin Problem No. 5: Eczema/Atopic Dermatitis

Although more common in younger children, experts say that sometimes, these patches of dry, scaly, reddened skin follow kids into their teen years.

"Many teens involves in sports find their childhood eczema grows worse, frequently aggravated by trauma or by sporting equipment worn on the knees or ankles, for example," says Schlessinger.

Sometimes, a non-perfumed, heavy-duty moisturizer is all you need. Experts say this is particularly important if you shower after sports and go out into cold weather, which can further dry and irritate skin. Just apply the moisturizing lotion immediately after showering, bathing, or swimming.

"If a moisturizer doesn't help - or if the skin begins 'weeping,' oozing, or it becomes significantly red or itchy, it's time to see a dermatologist, who can prescribe medications that can help," says Schlessinger.

These include both topical and oral preparations, and prescription-strength moisturizers. Your primary-care provider can also prescribe such treatments.

Reviewed on January 01, 2006

Today on WebMD

Girl with acne
See if you know how to control your acne.
happy woman with clear skin
Triggers and treatments for blackheads, whiteheads, and cystic acne.
Bride with acne
Dos and don’ts for hiding breakouts.
close-up of a young man soaping his face
Why adults get acne and how to treat it.
Boy cleaning acne face
HPV Vaccine Future
beauty cream
Bride with acne
Woman applying mineral makeup
Arrows pointing on teen girl blemish

WebMD Special Sections