The impact of COVID-19 on your skin

Having COVID-19 doesn’t just affect your body on the inside but can lead to skin concerns as well. Here’s what to look out for in your complexion when you are infected and recovering (and what you can do to treat and restore it).

For the last two years, the world has been in the grips of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Even though the medical community has been studying the virus since its onset, there are constantly more discoveries being made about it and its effects. This applies both to the symptoms experienced by those who are infected as well as the short- and long-term effects during and after recovery.

Covid 19 effects on skin

What we know about the coronavirus as it pertains to the field of dermatology is that it can have a profound impact on your skin and hair. And this goes beyond ‘maskne’ or mask-induced acne mechanica – and dry, cracked, overwashed hands.

If you currently have, or are in recovery from, COVID-19, here are changes in your skin to look out for in your skin (and what you can do to treat them).


At least 8.8% of people who’ve had COVID-19 have experienced a rash. One of these rashes may appear hive-like. Known in dermatology as urticaria, it can be widespread and occur during and even months after infection. Other rashes may present as raised bumps on the skin along with redness and irritation.

Treat it: Hives will respond to over-the-counter antihistamine medication from a pharmacist which may help to soothe your itchy skin.

Mouth ulcers

During periods of stress, we are more susceptible to mouth ulcers and cold sores. And since the virus takes a toll on your immune system, ulcers around the lips and mouth are not uncommon while sick. Fortunately, this tends to clear up as you recover.

Treat it: Consider an over-the-counter cold sore balm or, if they persist, contact your healthcare or dermatology provider.

‘COVID digits’

Another skin condition that may appear after or during a COVID-19 infection includes swelling and discoloration of the fingers and/or toes. This can take around three months to resolve and you may experience some peeling of the skin.

Treat it: Keep your hands and feet warm and dry. You can use gloves and warm socks, changing them if they become damp. Also, wear warm, comfortable shoes that are not too tight.  Call your dermatology practitioner or doctor if these home solutions don’t work.

At APDerm, we ensure that our providers take the utmost care to ensure the safety of all of our patients. Click here to familiarize yourself with the COVID-19 safety measures we’re taking at all of our locations.

Leave a Reply