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How to Avoid Those Nasty Summer Skin Rashes

Aug 17, 2007
Summer is a time to relax, enjoy yourself, maybe get a tan and forget about your everyday troubles. However, whilst it may be one of the happiest times, summer can also bring a lot of grief to your skin. People with oily skin will find that their condition becomes worse, there is the ever present risk of developing skin cancer, and the skin can also become overly dry. However, something many people do not think about, are the many rashes which the skin can develop over the summer months.

Summer rashes can be frustrating, itchy, and sometimes hard to get rid of. So what causes them and what should we be doing prevent them from occurring in the first place?

Summer Skin Rashes
When summer finally arrives people start to take part in summer activities and unfortunately these activities increase the risk of skin rashes occurring. There are many reasons why these rashes appear, some can be caused by too much heat, whilst others can occur through exposure to insects and certain plants. Whatever the rash is caused by, it can become extremely irritating and itchy if left untreated. Some common summer skin rashes include:

Heat Rash

This is by far the most common skin rash which occurs during the summer months. It is more common in people with fair skin and you can identify it by small red blisters or large spots, appearing on the areas which have had the most sun exposure. This type of rash can be extremely itchy and it often occurs either immediately or a few hours after being exposed to the sun. The only way to really prevent this rash is to wear a high sun protection factor sunscreen at all times whilst out in the sun..

Photosensitivity Caused by Drugs

It is possible for some medications to make a person more sensitive to sun exposure. This condition is known as drug induced Photosensitivity and a rash most commonly appears with the condition. Some drugs which may cause this include the birth control pill, anti inflammatory drugs and blood pressure medicine.

Photoallergic Dermatitis

A rash appears with this condition as the sun reacts to certain chemicals which are on the skin. Cosmetics, perfumes and soap can all cause this kind of rash and even some sunscreens can contribute. Obviously if you do notice this you should stop using whichever chemical is causing the problem, if you can actually identify it that is!

Prickly Heat
This is another common rash which is caused by the sweat which the sun produces. Otherwise known as Malaria, it occurs when the sweat ducts become blocked or there is too much perspiration. They tend to break open and this allows the sweat to leak just under the skin which is what causes the rash to occur.

Rashes Caused by Plants
In summer some plants really come into bloom, and often if you come into contact with some of them, you will gain a nice little rash! Some common plants which cause these kinds of rashes include daffodils, stinging nettles, Japanese Boxwood and Ivy. So always stay away from wild plants as much as possible.

Insect Bites

Insect bites are quite common in summer as more insects are drawn to the heat. The bite can cause a nasty, itchy little rash so it is always best to protect yourself with insect repellent throughout the summer.

The best way to treat any rash is to try and not scratch it. However tempting it may be and however itchy the rash is, scratching it can cause the rash to become infected. If you do end up with an infection you may need to go to the doctors who will prescribe you antibiotics to clear it up. Generally rashes clear up on their own, though if it does persist and you start to develop a fever, it is important to contact your doctor as soon as possible.
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