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Different Types of Skin Rashes and Treatment

Skin rashes may appear for a variety of reasons whether due to an allergy or a reaction to the sun, chemicals, medicines and many other possibilities. There are many different types of rashes, so if you notice a red or itchy patch appearing somewhere on your body it will help to know more or less what type of rash you have although you should never diagnose yourself, even with a rash. A visit to the doctor’s office is always the best bet to ensure proper diagnosis and to receive the quickest and most effective treatment.

Skin rash reactions appear in a variety of ways, but the most common include red, itchy bumps or scaly patches of red itchy skin covering the entire body or red itchy scaly patches isolated in certain areas that are either fungal or bacterial related. Of course, if you notice a rash developing on any part of your body the first thing you want to do is get rid of it because not only is it unsightly, but it itches and is uncomfortable. There are many over the counter lotions and antihistamines that may be used to tone down the rash and its effects until you reach medical help. Consider the following description of the rashes and their causes.

Scaly and Itchy

At any time in your life you might develop a skin condition known as eczema which causes scaly, itchy red rashes. Eczema can occur in anybody at any age and for many different reasons, however eczema is made up of several types of skin conditions including atopic dermatitis and contact dermatitis.

Atopic dermatitis is hereditary and is the reason why anyone can have it. Generally, eczema sufferers experience bouts with atopic dermatitis more frequently than other causes of eczema. Eczema in this form usually begins in early childhood with red cheeks, sensitive skin, and small rashes on various parts of the body. This of course continues throughout adulthood and the scaly itchy patches may appear anywhere. The reason atopic dermatitis is caused is not exactly known, all that is known is the condition is hereditary and may be caused by any number of things. If you have atopic dermatitis you might notice an exacerbation of your skin condition in the cold months when cold air makes the raw skin even more sensitive and aggravated. Doctors do not believe foods and soaps used to wash the body and clothes are meaningful culprits in this skin condition, although some individuals believe their skin is less affected if they avoid certain foods or soaps. Atopic dermatitis is not contagious so others should not be concerned about catching it. And sufferers should use moisturizing creams and lotions, not bathe too often, avoid winds and cold temperatures, and follow their doctors suggestions.

Contact dermatitis is another form of eczema, however it is not heredity and occurs just as the name suggests, when someone comes in contact with some element that causes a rash. Common examples of contact dermatitis include poison ivy and other poisonous plants, costume jewelry and the like. In these situations, the rash only appears at the location where the allergen contacted the skin. However, poison rashes can spread so care should be taken. In order to effectively treat contact dermatitis the individual with their doctor must pinpoint what caused the reaction. Sometimes this can be very difficult because many patients have not done anything different in their daily life and have no clue what caused their itchy, scaly rash. Treatment for contact dermatitis generally includes a hydrocortisone cream applied to the rash on a regular basis as well as non-steroidal options as well. If you have a bout of contact dermatitis your doctor will be able to determine what treatment is best for you.

Other scaly rashes that are common include psoriasis and pityriasis rosea. Your doctor will be able to determine if your scaly rash is a result of eczema or another culprit.

Scaly Rashes Caused by Fungus or Bacteria

If you have a rash that is caused by fungus or bacteria this simply means that an infection in your body manifested as a scaly, itchy rash on your skin. Many people do not want to believe they have a fungus or bacterial rash because they believe only dirty or unsanitary people get these types of rashes. This is not true and these types of rashes are not a result of being unclean.

Typically, people believe you catch fungal rashes from pets, at the gym, and in other locations where many people or pets might congregate. This is not necessarily the case, either. If you have a fungus rash, like jock itch or athlete’s foot, then you will probably be prescribed an over the counter cream like clotrimazole or terbinifine. These creams applied to the fungus will cure it over a period of time.

Bacterial Rashes

Frequently a bacterial rash known as Impetigo will appear on the body in red, scaly patches. This happens frequently in children, and not as often in adults, and is caused by infections of staph or strep. These rashes are difficult to cure with over the counter creams and Impetigo should be treated with Bactroban or even antibiotics. If you or your child has Impetigo your doctor will be able to diagnose it and prescribe a treatment to handle it.

All Over Itchy, Red Bumps

Another type of rash is simply having itchy red bumps all over your body, which is generally caused by an allergy or a virus. Viruses like shingles and chicken pox result in itchy red inflamed bumps all over the body that drive individuals crazy because they want to scratch the bumps so bad. If you have a viral rash, it will likely run its course on its own and then go away within a weeks time. However, if you have a viral rash all over your body in the form of itchy bumps then you should see your doctor immediately to get some relief.

An allergy can cause itchy red bumps all over the body as well. The most common type of allergic rash is from taking a new drug. Frequently, when taking a new drug if you develop a red itchy rash in the form of bumps you should inform your doctor immediately. Also, drugs an individual has been taking for months or years is unlikely to cause a reaction like this. Many times food, detergents, and other external factors are blamed for causing these types of rashes, but it generally is not so. If you have a rash you more than likely have something going on inside your body.

This is not a comprehensive list of rashes or causes of rashes to say the least. However, it is a brief overview of some of the more common types of rashes and what you should do if affected. Remember, when a rash crops up it will be itchy and annoying and you should resist the temptation to simply treat it yourself. It could be caused for any number of reasons, so see your doctor and find out the real cause and get the best treatment available.

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