Molluscum contagiosum is a very common infection of the skin caused by the molluscum contagiosum virus. It produces benign, raised lesions or bumps on the upper layers of your skin. Usually, there are numerous bumps clustered together and may be of varying sizes.
One characteristic sign is that the bumps have a small indentation or dot on the top, which may become inflamed, red or irritated. The bumps are shiny in appearance, typically either flesh-colored or pink in tone, and are usually painless but may be itchy.
These bumps often appear about seven weeks after being exposed to the virus. Sometimes, the bumps do not appear for many months.
The bumps may appear on virtually any area of the body, with the most common areas being around the eyes, face, neck, armpits and arms. The infection may also occur on the genitals, lower abdomen and inner upper thighs, if the infection was sexually transmitted.
Anyone can get molluscum contagiosum, but children between the ages of 1 and 10, people who live in tropical climates, people with weakened immune systems and people who have atopic dermatitis are at a higher risk.
While not life-threatening, this viral skin infection can cause a lot of discomfort if left untreated. Also, there is a risk of spreading the infection to friends, family members and others with whom you come into close . The infection spreads through direct person-to-person and through with contaminated objects.
Many natural treatments can help deal with molluscum contagiosum. Home remedies focus on eliminating the virus causing the condition, thereby reducing the symptoms and speeding up the healing process.
Here are the top 10 home remedies for molluscum contagiosum.
An effective treatment for molluscum contagiosum is apple cider vinegar. Being rich in antiviral properties, it helps kill the virus responsible for this infection. It penetrates into the skin quickly and eliminates the source of the infection.
Plus, it is rich in vitamins and minerals that give a boost to your immune system, which helps speed up recovery.
Tea tree oil is a natural antiseptic and antiviral agent. When applied topically, it penetrates the skin and fights the molluscum contagiosum virus.
A 2012 study published in the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology reports that the combination of tea tree essential oil with organically bound iodine offers a safe therapeutic alternative in the treatment of childhood molluscum.
Note: Do not consume tea tree oil.
Another highly effective remedy to combat molluscum contagiosum is grapefruit seed extract or GSE.
GSE has strong antimicrobial properties and is believed to be effective against more than 800 bacterial and viral agents.
Direct application of GSE aids in clearing up the molluscum contagiosum bumps or papules and helps control the infection to avoid spreading the disease to the surrounding skin.
Ingestion of grapefruit seed extract may take longer to show visible results but will aid your body in fighting this viral infection.
Hydrogen peroxide has strong antiseptic properties that make it an effective remedy to control the spread of molluscum contagiosum on your body.
Topical application of hydrogen peroxide solution directly on the papules draws out the pus and infected center, causing the bumps to pop and eventually dry out.
1% Hydrogen peroxide cream has also been found helpful for treating a molluscum contagiosum infection in infants.
Australian lemon myrtle is another effective home remedy. It contains many antimicrobial nutrients and can also help eliminate the dead cells and improve the growth of new skin.
A 2004 study published in Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy reports that applying a 10 percent solution of Australian lemon myrtle once a day reduced symptoms by 90 percent or more in children suffering from molluscum contagiosum.
Clove Oil has strong antimicrobial properties that make it an extremely effective remedy against molluscum contagiosum. It will also help prevent the spread of infection.
However, this is a strong oil and may sting quite a bit; so it is best to dilute this oil before application.
To soothe irritated and itchy skin due to molluscum contagiosum, colloidal oatmeal is very effective.
Colloidal oatmeal is finely ground oatmeal that is rich in fatty acids and can keep the skin moisturized. Also, it has anti-irritating and anti-inflammatory properties that provide instant relief from itching.
Another very effective molluscum contagiosum home remedy is oil of oregano. This oil has powerful antimicrobial properties that help deal with the root cause of this skin infection.
Oregano oil also helps boost the immune system to fight off the infection quickly.
You can also use clove oil instead of oil of oregano.
Indian lilac, also known as neem, is another potent antiviral herb that can be used to treat molluscum contagiosum.
Neem has an active ingredient known as azadirachtin, which is best known as an antiviral agent that can effectively neutralize and eliminate the virus responsible for this skin infection.
Also, it boosts the immune system to help fight off the virus.
You can choose from the following neem remedies, depending on what is convenient for you.
If you have skin bumps, whether caused by the molluscum contagiosum virus or any other reason, duct tape can help get rid of them.
In fact, it is one of the simplest as well as effective home remedies for molluscum contagiosum. Duct tape deprives the affected skin of oxygen, which in turn helps kill the virus. It also prevents the infection from spreading to other people or other areas of the body.
Use this remedy on non-hairy areas.
currently sees patients at Monash Health, Victoria, Australia.
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