red spots on skin They can appear for different reasons in different areas of the body and present different forms. they are generally benign And there is no danger from them. One of the types of red spots are petechiae (also called red dot), which we discuss in this article.
Sometimes they just appear And they do not produce other manifestations beyond their presence. In other cases, they may cause itching. And can be somewhat annoying, especially if its appearance is related to fever, shock, physical effort or minor trauma, aging and even the action of certain medications.
What are petechiae?
Petechiae are small, completely red, brown, or purple spots. Which appear on the skin. The tone may vary depending on the area in which they appear and depending on the tone and undertone of your skin. What causes their formation? rupture of small blood capillariesDue to which a small amount of blood comes out and remains under the skin, just like when we get injured, but much smaller in size.
- If you look closely, you can see that the petechiae are like tiny drops of blood or dilated capillaries.
Therefore, petechiae are a type of red spots that can be dotted The diameter is generally less than 1 millimeter (They rarely measure more than 2 millimeters). Now, depending on the cause, multiple petechiae can form very close to each other in the same area, and their appearance can simulate freckle-like red spots of about 4 millimeters.
Although some people call petechiae red moles or ruby spots, they are not. It is true that They usually appear after the age of 40, coincides with the appearance of other signs of skin aging, and this may confuse them. But petechiae arise because as we age, the blood vessels become more fragile and the skin loses its elasticity, so any shock, pressure, fever due to infection… mild bleeding under the skin Can cause.
In younger people, a few widely scattered red dots may become visible. This is a no-risk sign but it invites you to take care of yourself.,
petechiae are not moles
If you have moles and freckles, you may think that the petechiae are early moles and that they will later turn brown and become other moles like yours. But no… petechiae are not moles
- mole are areas of increased pigmentation accumulation of melanin,
Remember that any blemish, mole or angioma Appearance on the skin requires observation Evaluate whether it grows and what its development is,
Why do petechiae or red dots appear on the skin?
The most common reasons for the appearance of petechiae are:
- conditions, infections and inflammatory processes,
- trauma Or pressure in an area due to effort.
- Drugs Which affect the capillaries or blood circulation.
- shortcomings nutrition
petechiae due to conditions such as infection or fever
Certain infectious conditions that present with fever or irritation, such as certain dermatitis, Can affect subcutaneous capillaries and cause its rupture by forming petechiae: in this case, They usually disappear once the process resolves.,
examples of infections Epstein Barr virus mononucleosis, cytomegalovirus infection, meningococcus, rubella, streptococcus that cause tonsillitis, SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus infection can cause petechiae.
vasculitis or inflammation of vessels They may also appear with petechiae, as this may make it easier for blood capillaries to break.
Some conditions that cause it changes in the number of blood cells, As with platelet counts, they can cause petechiae.
petechiae due to trauma or excessive pressure
carry out intense physical effort May cause petechiae. This is convenient when efforts are made at places high temperature, During intense exertion, capillaries can rupture due to pressure under the skin and become irritated by extreme heat, which causes vasodilation.
A very typical case is the appearance of petechiae. When an adult or child vomits, In light skin children It has been observed that, when they cry a lot, they cough which requires a lot of effort and/or vomit, petechiae appear on their face. After some time they will disappear.
In case of vomiting, crying or coughing may or may not be related to an infectious process, In adults, petechiae that appear when vomiting They are caused by effort and usually appear on the face., In children this may also be accompanied by irritability. The babies turn red and after crying and vomiting, we see that they have small petechiae on their faces.
Some? Jobs or activities that require pressure or a situation in which you are under pressure or tappingMay also promote the appearance of petechiae.
Petechiae as a side effect of drug use
Certain medications, such as phenytoin, anticoagulants, chemotherapy or quinine, among others, can promote the appearance of petechiae. Always read the leaflet carefully and Consult your health professional Before the appearance of petechiae or hematomas whenever you take any medication or medical treatment.
petechiae due to aging
When I was young, my great-grandmother, who had many varicose veins, also had some red spots on her legs and arms, and they attracted my attention, because when I pressed a little with my finger, they disappeared, but when I Removed them with my finger, they reappeared… ““They don’t come out completely, they’ll come out the other way, I have very poor circulation,” He explained to me. My great-grandmother knew not to stand near a heat source (like a brazier or radiator) or in the sun, and to protect yourself from getting injured.
Petechiae as a manifestation of broken capillaries may appear at an older age A condition characterized by red spots, accompanied by the appearance of senile purpura both petechiae and ecchymosis (The difference is in size, ecchymoses are larger).
Over the years, they also appeared to my grandfather, but I was the elder and I explained to him that he had to Avoid exposure to shail and extreme heat or wearing tight things like when you hang shopping bags with one hand. My grandfather took them for granted: “They could be from diabetes… or from working so many years as a mechanic.” The truth is that he was right. ,
Why am I telling you this about my family? Because one of the factors that makes it easier for petechiae to appear is genetic predisposition, But this is not 100% conclusive.
As we saw, Blood vessels and capillaries become more fragile With certain conditions, including age, possible nutritional deficiencies, and this capillary fragility can lead to the formation of petechiae.
Some? Jobs or activities that require pressure or a situation in which you are under pressure or tappingMay promote the appearance of petechiae.
Petechiae due to nutrient deficiency
Nutrition is very important and we can reduce the appearance of petechiae, even though they are not harmful. after all: If petechiae appear, they tell us how our capillaries are performing.,
Vitamin C and Vitamin K deficiency They can promote hair fragility. However, this deficiency is difficult to sustain in a diet with adequate vegetables and fruits.
How to reduce the appearance of petechiae?
Depending on the factors that cause the appearance of red dots or petechiae-type spots, skin care is aimed at:
- take care of blood vessels through feeding To avoid capillary fragility. Fruits that contain vitamin C and flavonoid-type pigments promote the protection of blood capillaries, which is why they have vitamin P (vasoprotective and capillarotropic) action, such as red and blue fruits, The vegetables that provide us with Vitamin K also help with capillaries and blood circulation. you may need one specific supplement In this case, consult a health professional.
- Avoid direct heat sources, mainly, but not only, in the thinnest areas of the skin: face, neck, décolleté, feet, calves, hands, arms. Also avoid hours of maximum solar intensity.
- Keep skin hydrated and protected Using a cream or lotion appropriate for your skin type. It reduces skin aging and atrophy.
- If you are suffering from any allergies that appear on the skinBe mindful of exposure to allergens, whether through contact or through food or medications. This minimizes blood vessel involvement. Consult your health professional.
- Protects feet and legs as well as hands and forearms insect bite, piercing or bump, For example when arranging plants, walking in the countryside or doing physical work.
- If you have high blood pressure and/or varicose veinsPay attention to your diet, avoid being overweight and live a healthy life.
- If you take any medicinesIf petechiae appear in several areas at once, consult your health professional as it may be a manifestation of a side effect of the medication.
Finally, remember that Petechiae in themselves are not serious, If petechiae appear in several areas at once or are accompanied by intense itching or fever, or if large red spots increase in number and size or spread throughout the body (with or without itching). visit your health professional Assessing the cause and proposing appropriate care.