A skin rash is a superficial eruption of the skin that causes changes in the color or texture of the skin and may produce redness, small bumps, blisters, spots or scaliness. The cause or type of a skin rash can usually be determined by its visible characteristics or other symptoms that are present. Skin rashes can be triggered by an allergic reaction, a virus or infectious illness, a bacterial infection, a fungal infection, and some are even hereditary. The treatment of a skin rash will depend on the type or cause of the rash.
The most common types of skin rash include:
- Allergic reactions – skin rashes due to allergic reactions are some of the more commonly seen rashes. Contact dermatitis is an example and is a rash caused by an allergic reaction to something such as rubber, metal or poison plants. Skin rash due to a drug reaction is another common cause of allergic skin rash. Rashes caused by an allergic reaction will disappear once the irritation leaves the body's system
- Infectious illness - examples of skin rashes from infectious illness are rashes associated with illnesses such as chicken pox, scarlet fever, measles, impetigo, rubella and roseola. Rashes caused by infection will disappear once the infection or irritation leaves the body's system
- Atopic dermatitis – is the medical term for a recurrent skin rash condition also known as eczema and characterized by itchy, dry, red and sometimes scaly skin. Eczema is a hereditary skin problem that often starts in infancy. Severe cases of eczema may cause red, scaly and swollen skin all over the body. Treatment for eczema will include topical steroids, OTC and prescription creams
- Fungal and bacterial - infections such as Impetigo and others can cause a blistery or crusted rash due to a bacterial infection. Fungal infections can be treated with OTC anti-fungal creams which can be bought without a prescription. Bacterial infections do not respond well to OTC medications and should be treated with oral antibiotics and prescription creams
- Antibacterial creams are not very effective for bacterial infections and are better treated with oral antibiotics and prescription creams.
Good hygiene and proper skin care will help healing, ease discomfort and help prevent scarring and infection.
- Use a mild soap or water to wash the affected area
- Take regular showers or quick baths using warm water
- Don't scrub your skin
- Gently pat your skin dry
- Keep skin moisturized
- Avoid exposure to irritants
When to see a doctor
See a doctor if you experience any new symptoms, if the rash gets worse and does not respond to treatment.
Medfast Urgent Care Centers offer fast, professional medical treatment for sprains and skin rashes. Our average wait time to see patients is less than an hour, compared to Hospital Emergency Rooms, which can sometimes take longer than three to four hours and are much more expensive. We are professionally staffed with highly-skilled, licensed doctors and nurses, and fully equipped to handle testing and treatment for skin rashes.