Bumps on Elbows: Itchy and Non-Itchy Bumps, Causes, Home Remedies

Bumps on elbows

Bumps on elbow shouldn’t bother you much. The bumps can be tiny or large and the causes depend on a variety of reasons. Some causes are abscesses and skin rash, and each cause has its symptoms. The size of bumps on elbow also varies.

The bumps can also be present in the form of raised bumps on elbows. This article is going to go over common causes of these bumps, how to get rid of bumps, and common home remedies. 

Common Causes of Bumps on Elbows

Here are some common causes of bumps on elbows that are found in children and adults.

  • Viral Infections: Viral infections tend to produce bumps on a local area of the body, like the elbow region. Besides the bumps, viral infections can cause rash, blisters, and inflammation. Bumps from a viral infection typically last several days.
  • Rash: Bumps from rash can be caused by fungal or bacterial infections. But there are cases where fungal or bacterial infections are not the cause.
  • Atopic Dermatitis: Atopic dermatitis is a form of eczema, and it is hereditary. It is more common in children, and it is caused by an allergy, such as cosmetics, detergents, or foods.
  • Psoriasis: One of the primary indicators of psoriasis is dry skin in particular area, such as the elbow. Dry skin is more susceptible to psoriasis than oily skin. Other indicators besides dry skin are bump and scaly, red patches. Psoriasis is also a chronic condition that is intermittent. One cause of psoriasis is a weak immune system, which does not allow the skin to heal. A conventional treatment of this skin condition is applying moisturizer on the patches or bumps several times a day. Activities that can worsen this situation are smoking, stress, and alcohol consumption.

Causes of Itchy Bumps on Elbows

These factors are associated with itchy bumps on elbows.

  • Dermatitis Herpetiformis: This chronic skin condition is a common cause of bumps on elbows. It is also easier to treat and alleviate than eczema or psoriasis. The primary indicator is bumps filled with fluid, and these bumps can trigger severe itching. It is more common within the teenage to middle age groups, and it is more prominent in women than men. The size of the bumps can grow up to a half-inch in diameter.
  • Scabies: Scabies is caused by tiny mites that burrow under the skin usually where the skin folds or if you wear tight clothing. Bumps on elbows are a common occurrence in the case of mites. They appear as red bumps on elbows and produce itchiness. Scabies is highly contagious and can spread through human contact. Prescription medications are the standard treatment for scabies.
  • Poison Ivy/Oak: The oily allergen in the stem, roots, and leaves what causes the reaction from this plant, and the allergen is. The result presents itself as red blisters and intense itching. It can be treated with over the counter ointments and creams. For more severe cases, a dermatologist can prescribe a stronger ointment.

Related Reading: Eczema on the Face: Common Causes & Natural Treatments for Facial Eczema

Causes of Non-Itchy Bumps on Elbows

These conditions are associated with the bumps that do not produce itchiness.

  • Cysts: These growths are in the form of sacs that hold liquid, semi-solid, or gaseous substances. The size of a cyst can be so tiny that it won’t be visible by the naked eyes or it can be large enough to be seen clearly. The causes of cysts include blocked blood flow, chronic inflammatory infections, or tumors. Cysts usually go away on their own and are not harmful. Large cysts could cause an interference with everyday life until they are surgically drained or removed.
  • Lyme Disease: This type of disease is caused due to a tick bite and Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria infection. Lyme disease starts off as a small red bump in the area of the bite. Then, it increases in size and forms a bull’s eye pattern. During this process, the redness also increases.
  • Granuloma Aannulare: Another name for this condition is necrotic papulosis. It appears as red bumps on elbows that are not itchy and form itself into a ring. This condition is more common in children and young adults. Even though boys can be affected; it is more common in girls. The cause is still unknown. The timeframe for these bumps ranges from a few weeks to several months. It goes away on its own, but it can reoccur. Treatment is not needed for this condition. Though, steroid ointments and creams are used to clear the bumps.

Raised Bumps on Elbows

It is possible for small red bumps to show up on the elbow. Various medical and ecological factors prompt raised bumps. These bumps can be painful and uncomfortable. Over time, these growths can be benign or cancerous.

Raised elbow bumps can appear in anyone. The elbow region is prone to injury, such as blows to the elbow. The common causes of these lumps are inflammation, skin growths, or poor healing of a broken bone. Conditions that manifest from inflammation are infections, tendonitis, arthritis, bursitis, sports injuries, strains, and sprains.

Getting Rid of Bumps on Elbows

Getting rid of the bumps on elbows require moisturizing and some gently scrubbing. The skin can go back to its natural state with the following steps.

  • Wash the affected area daily with fragrance-free moisturizing body lotion. Apply the lotion with a washcloth to the affected area using circular motions. Rinse it off with warm water. Avoid using products containing sulfates, as they dry out the skin.
  • Pick out a mild exfoliating cream that contains glycolic and lactic acids. Squeeze out and massage cream over bumps using your fingers for a minute. Use small circular motions to get rid of dead skin. Wash area with warm water.
  • Pat the area lightly with a clean towel until most of the moisturizer is gone. Immediately apply a tablespoon of moisturizer to the bumps on elbows before the skin dries. Massage it lightly with your hands until the moisturizer gets absorbed.
  • Repeat these steps daily until the bumps disappear. This process can take two to three weeks. Reduce the exfoliating after one week.

Home Remedies to Treat Bumps on Elbows

Here are some common home remedies to try for bumps on elbows.

1. Banana Peel

Rub banana peel over bumps. The banana peel will alleviate dryness and irritation. This method works because of the antibacterial and antifungal properties of the peel.

2. Aloe Vera

The gel of this plant can be applied directly to the skin to get rid of bumps on elbows. It also reduces redness and inflammation. The gel has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. Use enough gel to cover the area.

3. Gluten-free Foods

A gluten allergy could be the cause of dermatitis herpetiformis, so it is better to avoid gluten in your diet. Ask your doctor if there is an uncertainty of a gluten allergy.

4. Exfoliate

Exfoliation helps remove dead skin that causes rough elbows. The best products to use for skin exfoliation are ones with natural sugar. Drugstore types are another ideal choice.

5. Anti-itch Lotion

Anti-itch lotion can help you treat eczema and psoriasis. You can use calamine lotion to get relief from itching. Use the lotion two to three times a day until the rash disappears.

6. Moisturizer

Always keep dry skin and rashes moisturized, especially if you have eczema. Dry skin makes the condition worse. Petroleum gel is another option for a moisturizer.

7. Over-the-counter (OTC) Steroid Cream

OTC cream helps reduce inflammation and itchiness of the affected area.             Hydrocortisone is an example of such OTC steroid cream. The instructions on box or container provides information on how much to use.

8. Baking Soda

Mix three tablespoons of baking soda with some amount of water to make a paste. Apply the mixture on the affected area, and leave it for five minutes. Rinse it off with lukewarm water. Do this daily until the bumps subside.

9. Olive Oil

The vitamin E in olive oil helps with the healing process. Another component of this oil is its hydrating nature. It eases dry skin and itchiness. To use this oil, mix it with sugar. Wet the affected area, and rub the mixture onto the skin for three minutes. Do this daily.

”Bumps on Elbows, Small, Raised, White, Skin Colored, not Itchy, Pictures, Get Rid, Treat,” Heal Treat Cure web site; http://www.healtreatcure.org/bumps/bumps-on-elbows-small-raised-white-itchy-get-rid-fast/#Treatment_of_Bumps_on_Knees_and_Elbows, last accessed October 13, 2017.
”Bumps on Elbows,” Healthh web site; http://healthh.com/bumps-on-elbows/, last accessed October 13, 2017.

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Irene Entila

Irene is a health and fitness consultant based out of Albuquerque, NM. She was a personal trainer during the years of 2010-2013. She holds a Bachelors of Liberal Arts with a focus on creative writing from The Evergreen State College. She obtained her personal trainer license through Seattle Central College in 2010. Irene has been an athlete since childhood. She currently train and compete in ultra-marathon running and jiu jitsu. She started health writing in 2009 as a hobby through her personal blog. She believes that people can seek help from a trainer or trained profession to reach fitness and health goals. Though, people can learn a lot about them and promote self-sufficiency if they had affordable resources. By 2010, Irene started contributing to several health websites while completing her personal trainer certification and training for marathons. She saw how certain health variables affected her training and wanted to share this information with the public. Since then, Irene has written various articles about health and fitness featured on different magazines.