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Heat Rash Treatment

Dhanya Joy
Heat rash is a common skin condition, observed mainly during hot and humid weather. It is characterized by irritated, itchy skin and red rashes, in areas, such as the neck and back. In babies, it occurs in the diaper area. It needs to be treated, in order to get rid of the discomfort of itchy skin and burning sensation. ...
Heat rash, commonly known as prickly heat, is a skin rash that is caused due to the overheating of the skin or when sweat gets trapped in the sweat glands. Although it is believed to occur in hot and humid weather, it can also occur otherwise. Children and infants are the ones commonly affected, but adults too can develop it due to exercise or exposure to heat.
The scientific term used to describe heat rash is 'Miliaria'. Small red blisters occur on the neck, shoulder, back and other areas where sweat is clogged. The clogged pores are also blocked with dead skin cells and by bacteria known as Staphylococcus epidermidis.
Effective heat rash treatment is necessary as it can cause itchiness, burning and pricking sensation and a lot of discomfort. If it is left untreated, a secondary skin infection may also develop. There are a number of easy remedies that can effectively treat and cure all the symptoms.

Treatment for Babies

As mentioned before, babies and children are most prone to developing a heat rash, due to their poorly developed sweat glands. Parents usually wrap up their babies in a bundle to keep them warm and to protect them from insects like mosquitoes, resulting into excessive sweating and heat rashes. In babies, it may also occur due to very tight clothing and diapering. Follow the tips mentioned below to treat the condition in babies.
☛ Provide a cool, less humid environment by using an air conditioner or fan.
☛ Keep the baby off diapers and clothes for a while or make it wear loose clothes. Avoid synthetic clothing and use only cotton clothing.
☛ Use a lot of prickly heat powder and calamine lotion over the area where heat rash has developed.
☛ Avoid oil-based ointments, as they keep the skin warm and moist which will only worsen the condition. Also, avoid massaging him/her with oil, if he/she is suffering from prickly heat.
☛ Use wet flannels to soothe the affected area and bathe the baby in lukewarm water.
☛ You can also apply some aloe vera gel obtained from the plant on the affected area.
☛ Trim the baby's nails regularly and cover his/her hands with socks so that it does not itch the affected area.
If the heat rash is severe, consult a doctor immediately for medical treatment.

Treatment for Adults

Heat rash in adults may develop as a result of excessive sweating, high fever and wearing of tight clothes for a long period of time. In adults, it can also be caused due to poor hygiene and due to allergic reactions caused by the use of certain antiperspirants and deodorants. Usually it heals on its own in two to three days and treatment may not be required. But sometimes, it may fail to heal on its own and will need to be treated.
☛ Cleanse the affected area with an antibacterial solution and let it air dry.
☛ Wear loose cotton clothes and avoid synthetic clothing.
☛ Itching can be relieved by applying  calamine lotion, prickly heat powder or aloe vera gel. Rubbing ice will help soothe the burning and prickly sensation.
☛ Creams and medications containing hydrocortisone can also be helpful in relieving itching.
☛ A cool bath should be able to soothe the affected area. Remember to keep the skin dry to avoid further growth of bacteria.
☛ Avoid itching or tampering the rash with fingers, as it can increase the bacteria.
☛ Cut down on beverages and spicy foods; instead, increase intake of fruits, juices and salads during summers.
Home Remedies
Rub small ice cubes over the affected area for a soothing effect.
Wet a small piece of cloth in cold water and apply the cloth to the area where the rash has developed.
Make a mixture of 1 cup ground oatmeal  with 3 tablespoons baking soda  mixed in bathing water. Bathe with this water, rinse and dry thoroughly.
Apply a paste of gram flour over the affected area and leave it to dry. Rinse with cool water.
Make a paste of 2 tablespoons sandalwood powder  and two tablespoons coriander powder  with a some cold milk  Apply this paste to the affected area and allow it to dry. Then wash it off with cool water.
Drink lots of water. Drinking water helps maintain body temperatures as well as overall hydration. Lack of water causes dehydration, due to which one may have to suffer from weakness and generalized malaise
Many times several strenuous exercises or physical activities generate excessive sweating and finally it leads to heat rash, so it's best to go slow on such activities at least during summers. The above methods and home remedies are quick and effective heat rash treatments. However, if it persists even after three to four days, seeking medical advise would be the right thing to do.