Lumps, bumps, and nodules can pop up anywhere on your body. When they appear on your neck, they may represent something as benign as a skin tag or spot of acne. On the other hand, bumps or spots on your neck can indicate more serious conditions. Check out this list of 13 conditions that may appear on your neck.
Zits can crop up on your neck as well as your face, back, and chest. You may think you can put acne behind you along with teenage angst. However, acne can crop up later in adulthood. Factors that contribute to adult acne may include hormonal changes, stress, smoking, oily skin, and bacteria. Some medications may also increase your risk of acne. You can help prevent acne breakouts by washing your face no more than twice each day with water and a gentle cleanser. Products that include salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, or retinoid agents may help to fight acne.
12. Age Spots
Small, dark patches on your skin may be signs of aging. These spots are especially common in individuals who have had repeated, chronic sun exposure. To prevent age spots, take care to use a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more when out in the sun. Apply moisturizer daily to protect and hydrate the thin skin of your neck. Wear a wide-brimmed hat and protective clothing when you are out in the sun. Furthermore, a shade cap is a hat that has a flap of cloth that drapes down to cover your ears and the back of your neck. Keep in mind that the rays of the sun are especially strong between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
11. Contact Dermatitis
A red, itchy rash after coming into contact with irritating chemicals is known as contact dermatitis. Products that may cause an allergic skin reaction may include household cleaning products, laundry detergent, soaps, perfumes, and makeup products. You may suffer symptoms of contact dermatitis on your neck if you touch your neck after using these products. A reaction to a necklace or other piece of jewelry can also result in contact dermatitis. Home remedies that may relieve the itching and discomfort of contact dermatitis include anti-itch creams, oral antihistamines, cool compresses, and oatmeal baths.
10. Acanthosis Nigricans
Dark, velvety skin may be a sign of acanthosis nigricans. According to the Mayo Clinic, this condition typically affects the skin along folds in areas such as the neck, armpits, and groin area. Contact your doctor if you notice changes in your skin color or texture. This condition may be a symptom of underlying diseases such as diabetes, hormonal disorders, or lymphoma. Treatment for acanthosis nigricans includes treating any underlying disorders. Weight loss may help to treat this condition. In addition, your doctor may recommend topical prescription medications, antibacterial soaps, antibiotics, or laser therapy.
9. Graves’ Disease
An enlarged thyroid, known as goiter, is a sign of Graves’ disease. Graves’ disease is an autoimmune disorder in which the thyroid gland produces excess thyroid hormones. The exact cause of this condition is unknown. However, you may be at risk if you have a family history of this or other autoimmune disorders. According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, other symptoms of Graves’ disease include a fast heartbeat, diarrhea, and tremors. Furthermore, insomnia, muscle weakness, nervousness, and weight loss may be symptoms of Graves’ disease. Treatment may include radioactive iodine therapy, anti-thyroid medicines, or surgery.
8. Thyroid Nodules
According to the Mayo Clinic, conditions such as a deficiency in iodine, overgrowth of normal thyroid tissue, or development of fluid-filled cysts can lead to thyroid nodules. Thyroid nodules are usually benign and often display no signs or symptoms. However, in some cases, you may notice swelling of the thyroid gland, which is located at the base of your throat. In some extreme cases, this swelling may result in difficulty breathing or swallowing. If the thyroid nodules cause the production of excess thyroxine hormone, you may experience sweating, weight loss, nervousness, or an irregular heartbeat.
The itchy, red rash of eczema can affect your neck as well as other areas such as your face, hands, elbows, and knees. If you are prone to eczema, there are steps you can take to prevent flareups. These include using a moisturizer, minimizing stress, maintaining a proper body weight, and avoiding irritants. Your doctor may prescribe corticosteroids, antibiotics, or biologic agents to treat eczema. You may be able to relieve the symptoms of eczema by taking oatmeal baths, using a humidifier, and applying bandages.
You may have seen Dr. Sandra Lee removing lipomas on the TLC show Dr. Pimple Popper. A lipoma is a fatty cyst that may appear just under the skin between skin and muscle. The cause of lipomas is unknown. However, there seems to be a genetic factor, as lipomas tend to run in families. Unless the lipoma is pressing on a nerve, it is generally not painful. These fatty cysts typically feel soft to the touch. While lipomas are usually harmless, it is important to have any unusual lumps or bumps check out by your physician.
Raised red, scaly patches of skin on your elbows, knees, scalp, or neck may be a sign of psoriasis. The National Psoriasis Foundation states that this autoimmune disorder may be triggered by stress, injury, or infection. Furthermore, certain medications such as lithium, antimalarial drugs, beta-blockers, or quinidine may trigger flares of psoriasis. Current treatments for psoriasis include corticosteroids, vitamin D analogs, anthralin, and topical retinoids. Light therapy, biologic agents, immune system suppressants, and methotrexate also help to treat psoriasis.
4. Seborrheic Keratosis
Seborrheic keratoses are skin growths that are tan, brown, or black in appearance and may resemble either a wart or a waxy deposit. Unlike actinic keratoses, these growths are not cancerous. The American Academy of Dermatology lists genetic predisposition and sun exposure as risk factors for this condition. Your dermatologist may remove a seborrheic keratosis if it resembles skin cancer, catches on clothing or jewelry, or is irritating. If the growth looks like skin cancer, your doctor may remove it and send it to a pathologist.
3. Skin Tags
Skin tags are soft, tiny, flaps of skin that may appear on your neck or in areas of the body where skin rubs together or against clothing. These include areas such as eyelids, armpits, and groin. While many do-it-yourself remedies have cropped up on the internet, these solutions may result in bleeding and infection. Skin tags are noncancerous. However, they may cause discomfort and irritation as they rub against clothing or become caught on clothing or jewelry. Medical News Today recommends seeing a dermatologist or other skin specialist if you desire skin tag removal.
When heading out into the sunshine, remember to apply sunscreen to your neck. Neglecting to protect your skin from the harmful rays of the sun can lead to a nasty sunburn. Protect your neck by applying sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. Wearing a wide-brimmed hat can also provide protection to your face and neck. If you find yourself outside without sunscreen, seek shade. If you do get a sunburn, you may find relief in a cool bath. Applying a moisturizer that contains aloe may also soothe a sunburn. Keep your damaged skin hydrated by drinking water.
1. Skin Cancer
It is possible for skin cancer to show up on your neck. Actinic keratoses are cancerous growths that may look like rough, dry, or scaly patches of skin. These keratoses may be pink, brown, or red in color. In some cases, they are flat, while in others they resemble a wart. The ABCDEs of skin cancer helps to distinguish moles or skin growths that may be cancerous. The warning signs of melanoma include Asymmetry, uneven Borders, differences in Color, a Diameter larger than a pencil eraser, and Evolving or changing over time.