Heat rash or miliaria is a common form of skin rash. This type of rash affects children and adults in warm, humid weather conditions. A rash might develop if the pores are blocked and sweat could not escape.
The cause is often friction on the skin surface. Among adults, heat rash develops on parts of the body that rub together such as under the arms or between the inner thighs. Infants often develop the rash on the neck area but also in the skin folds especially in the elbows, armpits and thighs.
Types of heat rash
- Miliaria crystallina – this is the prevalent and mild form of heat rash. It is defined as small transparent or whitish bumps filled with fluid on the skin surface. It is common among young infants than adults.
- Miliaria rubra – this is also called as prickly heat and likely to affects adults. It forms deeper in the outer skin layer. It causes red skin bumps, itchy sensation and lack of sweat in the affected area.
- Miliaria profunda – this affects the dermis and likely to affect adults. It is characterized as large, tough, flesh-colored bumps.
Management of heat rash
Some of the measures that can help in preventing heat rash include:
- Avoid wear constricting or tight clothes that does not allow the skin to breathe. It is recommended to use moisture-wicking fabrics that prevent the buildup of sweat on the skin.
- Avoid applying thick creams or lotions that can clog the pores.
- Avoid being overheated especially during the warm season. Stay in a cool or airconditioned room.
- Use a soap that will not dry out the skin and does not include any dyes or fragrances.
Heat rash is a minor discomfort that settles on its own in just days for most. A doctor should be consulted if a suspected underlying condition is serious or the rash frequently recurs.