Heat rash is a skin condition characterized by small pinkish rash that forms in the surface of the skin. It is known as Miliaria and is often acquired by individuals, especially kids and infants, during hot or summer seasons. Some statistics show that there are at least 20 percent of the population suffer from heat rush during summer.
It is a mild case of skin condition which can be treated easily. However in children, heat rash is a very irritating and can possibly cause secondary skin infection due to their delicate skin.
Heat rashes have several classifications based on how deep is the level of blocked heat on the layers of skin.
- Miliaria crystalline is the simplest form of heat rash. The blockage is only found in outermost layer of the skin causing tiny blister-like abrasions.
- Miliaria rubra is the most widespread of all forms of heat rash. Its blockage causes outflow of sweat into inner portions of the skin thus causing manifestation of bigger abrasions as well as redness.
- A less known but most severe form of heat rush is the Miliaria profundra. It is characterized by the severe burning sensation caused by the swift spread of rash throughout the body forming several large abrasions in the skin surface. The fast spread of rash is caused by the outflow of sweat between the superficial and deep layers of the skin.
- Another form of heat rash is the Miliaria pustulosa. However, this is often caused by bacterial infections.
The major function of the skin is to protect the body from different pathogens, chemicals, and radiations that can harm the body. It also serves as a temperature regulator. Skin contains several types of glands and one of them is the sweat glands. When there is too much heat, the sweat glands allow heat to go out of the body by producing sweat which exits the body through a duct. However, when the duct is clogged by dirt, the heat becomes trapped inside thus causing the formation of rashes.
Infants have undeveloped sweat glands which do not allow them to get rid of the heat produced from within their bodies. Their body also contains fats that store heat. For this reason when infants are exposed to heat, their body absorbs too much heat without them being able to remove the sweat they had produced.
Heat rash can also get worse when the affected area is irritated due to scratching and tight clothing.
When heat becomes trapped in the inner surface of the skin, air is unable to circulate in and out of the body. Too much sweating occurs and the sweat is unable to be dispersed in the air causing the appearance pimple-like rashes.
Signs and symptoms
When a person is affected by heat rash, simple signs and symptoms are observed just like other skin conditions. However, symptoms of heat rash are quite very common and plain.
The first and most frequent symptom is the appearance of small red colored dots while feeling a prickly itchy sensation as the rash spreads. This rash appears at different parts of the body. However for infants, rash appears on particular parts like the head, neck, back and shoulders.
Though heat rash can make well by its own, there are several ways you can treat them especially in children and severe cases of heat rash.
- Avoid hot and humid environments by staying in shady spots and air conditioned room.
- There are several lotions and creams like calamine lotion as well as hydrocortisone creams that can help lessen itching and swelling.
- In case of extreme itching, take medication like antihistamines.
- Use silk or cotton clothes. These types of clothing are easily penetrated by air thus keeping the skin cool.
- When severe signs and symptoms are felt, visit the nearest doctor for check up.
For all conditions, there are different treatments you can apply in order to cure that certain condition.
Heat rash can be prevented. This is necessary especially for children and infants in order to avoid taking in of medications that can have possible side affect their young bodies.
For infants, dress them with loose clothing during hot seasons. Or when there is increase in temperature, cloth them with light and shorter outfits in order to allow air to circulate in and out of their skin.
Several individuals pay no attention to heat rash due to its mild effects and occurrence in a short span of time. However, people should always remember that there are other individuals who are much prone to this kind of skin condition due to a more delicate skin. Heat rash in children as well as infants should not also be neglected due to the possible occurrence of secondary infection.
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