Skin rashes are one of the most common complaints, and sometimes they require medical treatment and evaluation. The doctors
who would be best qualified to discuss this issue with you include your primary care doctor
or your dermatologist
. Acne, including whiteheads and blackheads, is characterized by plugging and inflammation of the pores of the face and other areas. Sometimes it can become infected, but generally the treatment involves good hygiene and products to remove the skin plugging, such as benzoyl peroxide. Dermatitis, on the other hand, is an allergic inflammation of the skin. It does not have the 'bumps' of acne, rather the skin is generally inflamed, reddened, at times scaly, and itchy. The treatment for dermatitis focuses on good skin protection with moisturizers, sun screen, and avoiding harsh chemicals and direct sunlight. Chemicals and personal care products that are used for acne can make dermatitis worse, because they will excessively dry out the skin; since dermatitis is essentially over-dry skin, this can be a problem. As always the diagnosis and the management of your particular skin condition will require a physical examination by your personal physician. Scheduling an office visit with your primary care doctor or your dermatologist is highly recommended.