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Temps disparition grain milium.

How long does it take for a milium to disappear?

Milium cysts resemble small white dots that line the eyes. Although not dangerous, they are nonetheless unsightly for some people. Discover the resorption duration of these microcysts.

Summary
Published March 25, 2024, by Kahina, Scientific Editor — 4 min read

How do milia appear?

The milium grains, also known as milia, are small white cysts that typically appear on the face, particularly around the eyes and on the cheeks. They form when dead cells, and especially keratin, which is a skin protein, become trapped beneath the skin's surface rather than naturally exfoliating. They are benign and pose no risk to the health of the skin. There are primary milium grains (spontaneous appearance) and secondary ones (associated with various processes). The infants are generally more affected.

Their appearance can be attributed to various factors, such as obstruction of hair follicles, which prevents keratin from escaping. A genetic origin is also suspected, through hereditary transmission of the risk of developing them. Milia can appear following a trauma, such as skin abrasion, sunburn or the use of aggressive cosmetic products. Long-term application of topical corticosteroids would result in skin atrophy around the hair follicles, which could be the cause of milia. Finally, an association is suspected between milia and underlying dermatological diseases , such as epidermolysis bullosa .

How long does it take for a milium to disappear?

Generally, literature suggests that milia grains resolve spontaneously after a few weeks, or even a few months.

Most of the time, their disappearance does not require treatment and occurs without scarring, in accordance with the natural skin regeneration process. The duration can vary depending on the situations. This is the case for congenital milia, for example in infants, which disappear during the first months of life. Therefore, patience will be the only remedy.

However, their presence can be bothersome from an aesthetic perspective for some individuals. Furthermore, it happens that these milia are persistent. This is the case for secondary milia, associated with trauma, medication or even a dermatological disease. In this situation, consult your dermatologist so they can guide you towards suitable solutions.

Procedures such asmechanical extraction of milia, the prescription of suitable antibiotics, and the topical application of retinoids can be performed. Furthermore, more advanced techniques, such as ablation by CO2 laser, cryotherapy, and electrodessication, can be considered.

We remind you that it is strongly advised against picking at your skin. Indeed, the best course of action is to consult a healthcare professional if in doubt.

Sources

  • BERK D. R. & al. Milia: A review and classification. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology (2008).

  • GALLARDO AVILA P. & al. Milia. StatPearls (2023).

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