Actinic Dermatitis

Stuart Millar Updated by Stuart Millar

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Sun damage, facial and scalp redness with small, sandpaper-like rough spots that are sensitive. Can have small, rough plaques called keratoses (actinic keratosis) that can grow and develop into skin cancers.


Dr. Harlan typically treats his adult patients for actinic dermatitis by having them apply SmartLotion® 2x per day for up to 2 weeks.

As long as the patient sees improvement during the initial 2 weeks, after 2 weeks he typically recommends tapering down to 1x per day for 2 weeks. The rate of tapering should vary based on how quickly the rash is healing.

If the patient does not see improvement within the first 2 weeks, he will prescribe them a stronger treatment for 3 weeks to help with initial control and recovery before switching back to SmartLotion®.

If any plaques are present, Dr. Harlan will always perform a skin cancer check and recommends anyone with actinic keratoses to see their dermatologist for a skin cancer check as soon as possible.

Dr. Harlan typically treats actinic keratoses with 5-Fluorouracil cream or liquid nitrogen freezing.


After initial control and tapering, Dr. Harlan recommends his patients adopt a long term routine that works for them.

To prevent actinic dermatitis rashes from returning, Dr. Harlan instructs his patients to apply SmartLotion® 1x or less per day, as needed.

In addition to 2x per day moisturizer applications, some patients require 1 application per day, and some only require 3 applications per week.

This is why long-term safety was so important to Dr. Harlan when he formulated SmartLotion®. For whatever maintenance schedule his patients require, he wanted to ensure that there would be no chance of side effects. Rest assured, SmartLotion® is 100% safe for long term use, as demonstrated in his peer-reviewed safety study.

To read Dr. Harlan's peer -reviewed safety study, please click here.

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Atopic Dermatitis/ Eczema (Adults)