Rashes are a common skin concern, as many conditions may cause a rash. While some rashes are temporary and clear without intervention, many others will require treatment. At Silver Falls Dermatology, our providers have the experience and knowledge necessary to make an accurate diagnosis and develop a treatment plan that will successfully restore your skin’s health. Patients in Oregon and Washington can turn to our many locations when they experience rashes including atopic dermatitis, insect bites, psoriasis, ringworm, and more.
Common Types of Rashes
There are many different types of rashes, which may vary in their appearance or physical symptoms. They are commonly dry, itchy, painful and red. You may also notice the skin flaking or crusting.
Some common types of rashes include:
- Atopic dermatitis (Eczema)
- Contact dermatitis
- Flea or other insect bites
- Hand, foot and mouth disease
What Causes Rashes?
Rashes may be caused by a number of issues, including insect bites, skin diseases like psoriasis or eczema, allergic reaction and bacterial, fungal or viral infections.
In the case of skin diseases such as psoriasis or eczema, rashes are often caused or worsened by triggers such as extreme temperatures, irritants such as cosmetics or other environmental factors.
Bacterial, fungal and viral infections are typically spread by contact with an infected person or an object they have touched. For example, rashes may be spread by sharing clothing or towels with another person who has the infection.
Rashes from allergic reactions can be caused by a number of allergens. These can include contact dermatitis, an allergic reaction from direct contact with an allergen or irritant. Medications may also cause allergic reactions that present as rashes.
When to Seek Treatment for a Rash
While some rashes will resolve on their own, many should be treated by a provider like those at Silver Falls Dermatology. Some reasons to seek treatment include a widespread rash that covers a large area or the entire body. Rashes that appear suddenly or spread rapidly should typically be treated and are usually the result of an allergy. Painful rashes should also be treated to prevent worsening symptoms. Finally, rashes that begin to blister or show signs of infection should be evaluated by a medical professional. This is especially true for rashes in sensitive areas such as the mouth, eyes or genitals.
Some rashes may present medical emergencies which require treatment in your closest emergency room or urgent care. Rashes that are accompanied by a high fever or difficulty breathing should always be considered a medical emergency. Some examples include cellulitis, which is caused by bacteria or fungi entering an open cut or crack in the skin, or Kawasaki disease, which will also cause fever and swelling in the hands, feet and tongue.
Rash Treatment Options
During your appointment, your provider will screen for causes of the rash. Keep note of changes in medication, new personal care products or noticeable insect bites; these will help your provider diagnose the cause of your rash. You should also be prepared to explain your symptoms including itching, scaling, flaking or redness. As needed, your provider may recommend allergy testing.
After making a diagnosis, there are several treatment options that may be recommended to clear your rash. You may be prescribed medications including antibiotics, antifungals or corticosteroids. These may be topical or oral. A corticosteroid injection may also be necessary to relieve inflammation. Some conditions such as psoriasis or shingles may also have condition-specific medications that will help to relieve symptoms and prevent future rashes from forming.
Some types of rashes may be treatable using phototherapy. This can be especially beneficial for conditions such as eczema (atopic dermatitis) or psoriasis.
Finally, your provider may recommend professional quality skincare. As many products can be irritating to the skin, it may be recommended that you switch to products that are gentler and contain dermatologist-tested ingredients.