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Same or next day appointments available with a board certified dermatologist

Patient touching a red and painful area of the skin on the back of the neck

Skin Pain

See a Board Certified Dermatologist today!

See a Board Certified Dermatologist today!

Portrait of Ryan Harris, MD

Dr. Ryan Harris, MD is a board certified dermatologist located in Meridian, Idaho who has over a decade of experience in treating a wide variety of skin symptoms and rashes. He will take your problems seriously and do his best to provide you with the relief you need. If you have any skin problems or concerns, contact our office to schedule an appointment today.

What causes my skin to hurt?

Normal and healthy skin does not normally hurt. If you are experiencing pain in your skin, there is likely a problem that needs to be addressed. There are several reasons why your skin may hurt. A common reason is due to infections. Bacterial infections can cause significant skin inflammation leading to pain. Shingles is a type of viral infection that usually starts with significant pain later followed by the appearance of a blistering rash. Some rashes can be painful although rashes tend to be more itchy than painful. 

There are numerous types of skin growths that can hurt. Benign skin growths such as moles, skin tags, and seborrheic keratoses most often hurt because they are raised and subject to trauma as objects such as clothing, belts, bags, or other items hit or catch on the skin growths. Skin cancers, most commonly squamous cell carcinomas are often painful. Growths under the skin such as various cysts and lipomas can also be painful. 

Skin pain can also be due to nerve issues. If there have been previous accidents or traumas that damaged nerves, skin pain may follow. Patients with diabetes or other conditions that cause dysfunction of nerves may also be a source of pain. 

What can I do to help my painful skin?

Depending on the cause of pain, there are a variety of interventions to help. If an infection is present, evaluation by a dermatologist followed by an appropriate prescription should quickly improve the pain. Rashes may be treated with topical or oral therapies to decrease their severity and pain. 

If a skin growth is the source of pain, patients should take steps to avoid trauma to the skin growth. If this isn't possible, the growth will often need to be removed. If a growth has features concerning for skin cancer, a biopsy should be performed to give a diagnosis and guide treatment. Cysts and lipomas usually need to be surgically removed if they are continually painful. 

For nerve pain, various topical and oral therapies can be used to calm down the nerves. 

When should I see a dermatologist for my skin pain?

There is no clear answer as there are so many different causes of pain. If you suspect their may be an infection or possibly a skin cancer, an appointment should be scheduled right away. For other causes of pain, seeing a dermatologist is less urgent, but should not be put off if the pain is affecting your quality of life since relief can usually be provided at your visit. 

See a Board Certified Dermatologist today!

Portrait of Ryan Harris, MD

Dr. Ryan Harris, MD is a board certified dermatologist located in Meridian, Idaho who has over a decade of experience in treating a wide variety of skin symptoms and rashes. He will take your problems seriously and do his best to provide you with the relief you need. If you have any skin problems or concerns, contact our office to schedule an appointment today.