Yes, skin rashes can be excruciatingly itchy and irritating and we all experience rashes on odd occasions, irrespective of our age or nationality. Rashes can cause uncomfortable stinging, soreness, and redness that are hard to overlook. An itchy rash can make life difficult and uncomfortable.
These rashes are caused due to various underlying medical reasons, allergic reactions, skin irritation, and chemicals.
1. What is a Rash?
A skin rash is a condition of the skin that impacts the skin’s tone, texture, or appearance. An area of inflammation or swollen skin can also be referred to as a rash. Body rashes may appear all over the body, and in most cases might be fairly confined to certain areas on the skin, while on some rare occasions are spread across the body, depending on the situation.
They are of different sizes and are mostly itchy, swollen, and sometimes painful patches on the skin that might appear red.
A medical term for a normal rash is dermatitis and an itchy rash is known as allergic contact dermatitis. Skin rashes can have a wide range of symptoms and traits, including:
- Skin that is red or tarnished
- Red, raised welts
- Itchy skin rashes
- Crusty, pus-filled swellings
- Skin area that is scaly or flaky
- A skin patch that is lacy and slightly elevated
- Blotches that are crimson or otherwise discolored
- Red or discolored bumps
2. Rash vs. Allergy
As discussed earlier, any changes in the appearance or texture of the skin is referred to as a rash in general. It can be caused by numerous things, including illness, skin irritation, reaction to certain compounds, etc.
One the other hand, however, a specific immunological reaction to a substance that the body interprets as alien or harmful; such as pollen, animal dander, or particular foods, is known as an allergy or allergic reaction. Therefore, when an allergic person comes in contact with an allergen, they are likely to experience symptoms such as a rash, swelling, itching or in more severe case, difficulty breathing.
Therefore, a rash can be a sign of an allergic reaction but it usually might not be the result of one.
3. Types of Rashes
The underlying cause of the change in the look of your skin can be more clearly understood and explained by one of the many different types of rashes.
For instance, a couple of the most common rashes are listed below:
3.1. Infectious Rashes
- Ringworm: scaly, itchy patches formed on skin
- Chickenpox: a contagious disease that causes fever, itchy, blister-like rash.
- Impetigo: a bacterial infection of the skin that causes red sores around the nose and mouth
- Herpes: infection that causes painful blisters or ulcers
- Scabies: excessively itchy skin rash caused by burrowing mite called “Sarcoptes scabiei”
- Shingles: a viral infection that results in a painful rash.
- Measles: a viral infectious disease that often originates on one’s face and progresses to the rest of the body, resulting in a rash of flat red dots.
3.2. Non-infectious Rashes
- Hives: a raised, itchy rash that is typically brought on by an allergic reaction.
- Atopic dermatitis: a chronic (long-lasting) illness that results in skin irritation, redness, and swelling. (often referred to as eczema)
- Contact dermatitis: a skin reaction that turns red and itchy after coming in contact with an allergen or irritant.
- Seborrheic dermatitis (dandruff): mostly impacts the scalp and results in skin irritation, flaky dandruff, and scaly spots.
- Eczema: a long-term disorder that results in patches of dry, itchy skin that can be scaly, crusty, or oozy.
- Rosacea: A long-term inflammatory skin disorder that makes the face red, flushed, and covered in tiny bumps.
- Poison ivy: an allergic reaction caused by an oily resin which results in redness, itchy blisters and also difficulty in breathing.
- Heat rash: tiny, irritated blister-like bump clusters that can cause severe itchiness. Heat rash is most common during summer.
- Diaper rash: most commonly seen on baby’s bottom, results in patches of inflammation of the skin.
4. Symptoms of Rash
As discussed previously, depending on the reason, the signs and symptoms of rash may vary, however some typical ones are; redness and itching on the affected area, formation of small bumps or blisters, scaling where the skin becomes dry and flaky, discomfort or pain and especially if it has occurred in delicate areas, it might also liberate heat and spread across your body.
In severe cases, symptoms may also include fever, headache, vomiting, difficulty breathing and nausea.
5. Causes of Rashes
Rashes can be caused due of several factors.
One of the most prevalent types of rashes caused is contact dermatitis, which develops when some kind of substance comes in contact with the skin and irritates it. Skin redness from contact dermatitis may be minor or manifest as a rash of tiny red bumps. Larger blisters, redness, and swelling may be indicative of a more grave reaction.
Let us now see the common causes of contact dermatitis. It can be caused from:
- Shampoos, deodorants, perfumes, lotions, detergents, and especially those containing hazardous synthetic odors.
- Hand sanitizers
- Latex intolerance
- Food allergy
- Poison oak or poison ivy
- Autoimmune conditions
Apart from common dermatitis, other common causes of rash include:
- Virus like the Herpes Zoster
- Lyme disease, which often results in a “bull’s eye” rash
- Bug bites
- Prolonged heat exposure
- Drug (medicine) allergy
- Skin friction
- Lupus which frequently results in a “butterfly” rash across the cheeks and beneath the eyes
- Parasite infection like that of “Scabies”.
- A side effect to a drug or photosensitivity
- Prolonged contact with moisture like “Diaper rash”
- Bee stings
6. Risk Factors
Several risk factors can raise a person’s chances of getting a rash. A few among the others are listed below:
- An infection caused by a virus, bacteria, fungus, or parasite is one of the risk factors for developing a rash.
- Having allergies or asthma in your family or yourself also increases your likelihood of developing a rash.
- People who spend more time outdoors have a higher chance of developing a rash as rashes can arise from coming into contact with poison ivy, poison sumac, and poison oak as well as from insect bites.
7. How do You Get Rid of a Rash Overnight?
There are a couple of home remedies you might consider to assist in relieving symptoms and lessen the visibility of the rash, though it’s important to understand that some rashes might call for medical attention.
7.1. Treat the Rash with a Cold Compress
One of the quickest and simplest natural remedy to stop the itching and discomfort of a rash is by applying something cold (ice or cold water) on the affected area. Cold compress could be beneficial in easing the pain and swelling brought on by a rash.
A cold compress, a cool shower, or a damp towel can all provide quick comfort while also reducing swelling, itching, and rash progression.
7.1.1. How to Go About It
- Make an ice pack by putting some ice in a plastic bag or an ice bag. If you don’t have ice, you can simply dampen a cloth with some cold water.
- Cover the affected area with the prepared cold compressor. Hold onto it for as long as the itching or the discomfort goes away.
- Remember to never apply ice directly onto your skin for it might burn your skin.
- In case the itching doesn’t stop, repeat the process again.
- Or, if you don’t have much time, you can simply take a cold shower or a bath, especially focusing the areas where the rash has occurred.
7.1.2. How does it Help
The circulation of blood to an inflamed region is constrained by cold. Therefore, treating the rash with ice, water or cold compressor will help decrease swelling and inflammation and will almost immediately relieve itching.
A cool bath or shower may be helpful for rashes that impact a larger portion of the skin or that are in locations where an ice pack is not practical.
7.2. Apply Coconut Oil
Since time immemorial, tropical nations have been using coconut oil (extracted from the flesh and milk of coconuts), as a cooking oil and skin conditioner.
It contains antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties and is packed with saturated fats composed mainly of medium chain fatty acids.
Apart from being used for edible purposes and skin moisturizers, coconut oil is also believed to reduce inflammation and skin rashes.
Reminder: Coconut is among the top eight allergens, so before you try and test this method, it is suggested that you take an allergy test 24 hours prior to its use.
7.2.1 How to Go About It
- Coconut oil acts as a wonderful moisturizer for your skin and scalp. Therefore, once the allergy test is done, you can either apply the oil on the irritated or swollen skin or on the entire body.
- Leave it on for 30 to 60 minutes or overnight and gently wash it off.
- The best coconut oil for reducing rashes is virgin coconut oil. Because of its unprocessed nature, it retains most of its antibacterial and anti inflammatory properties.
7.2.2. How Does It Help
It has been revealed that coconut oil has effective anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antibacterial properties which can help treat rashes and stop them from recurring.
Virgin coconut oil contains medium-chain fatty acids, which are believed to have antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and therapeutic properties.
Further, it has been discovered that about half of the fat in coconut oil is made up of lauric acid that contains monoglyceride which is believed to have antimicrobial properties.
Moreover, studies on different kinds of people have revealed that coconut oil is beneficial for treating adult xerosis, newborn atopic dermatitis, and has healing properties.
Thus, coconut oil acts as one of the natural home remedies to treat rashes.
7.3. Take a warm Oatmeal Bath
Another home remedies to get rid of rashes is by taking an oatmeal bath .
Oats (Avena sativa), apart from being used for consumption purpose, for over hundreds of years, it has also been used for medical treatment like treating burns, eczema and others.
Compounds found in oats can reduce redness, discomfort, and itching while additionally helping to minimize surface inflammation and minor rashes.
Itching can be relieved with a bath that contains colloidal oatmeal.
7.3.1. How to Go About It
- Put warm water in the bathtub.
- Incorporate one cup or a packet of colloidal oatmeal with the water. If you do not have colloidal oatmeal you can simply grind regular oatmeal and add a cup of it to the bath.
- What next? Soak yourself in the colloidal oatmeal bath for about 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes have passed take a warm bath and rinse off the residues.
7.3.2. How Does It Help
Itching can be eased with a bath that contains colloidal oatmeal.
Oleic acid and linoleic oil in the oats works as an anti-inflammatory substance and aids in skin restoration.
The anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of the oatmeal help to soothe itchy, dry, and rough skin.
Linoleic oil, oleic acid, and avenanthramides found in oats are known to lower cytokines, the inflammatory proteins generated by cells.
Colloidal oats has been proven to improve the skin barrier when incorporated into creams and other formulations.
7.4. Aloe Vera
As you may already be aware that aloe vera (Aloe barbadensis miller), along with treating sunburn, healing cuts and aiding skin and health care, it also works wonders for treating rashes and irritated skin.
Fresh aloe plant is known for its anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and antioxidant properties.
Remember to do an allergy test for some people are allergic to this plant.
7.4.1. How to Go About It
- Extract the aloe vera gel from the aloe plant; blend it into a smooth gel.
- Wash and clean the affected area and pat dry. This helps to ensure optimal absorption.
- Apply the prepared aloe vera gel directly onto the rash, let it sit for 30 minutes and rinse it off with water.
- For best result, apply it twice to thrice a day.
- In case you don’t have aloe vera plant at home, you can also use aloe vera gel that is easily available at drugstores.
7.4.2. How Does It Help
Vitamin B-12, calcium, magnesium, zinc, vitamins A, C, and E, as well as some essential fatty acids, are all present in aloe vera, making it an ideal solution for treating rashes.
Furthermore, it includes sterols, enzymes, and carbohydrates, all of which are believed to help it possess anti-inflammatory properties.
It also contains antimicrobial properties that help in preventing the recurrence of the rash or infection.
7.5. Apple Cider Vinegar
Other natural remedies for skin rashes include apple cider vinegar.
Apple cider vinegar has been used for the treatment of skin rashes, irritated skin and other maladies since the olden times.
It is known to possess antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that might help in alleviating the symptoms of skin rashes.
7.5.1. How to Go About It
- Add one table spoon of apple cider vinegar to half a cup of water.
- Stir the mixture and with the help of a cotton pad, apply the mixture onto the affected area.
- Let it soak completely and rinse off.
- Repeat the process twice a day.
7.5.2. How Does It help
Apple cider vinegar’s acidic properties can aid to maintain the skin’s pH balance and prevents the development of germs and fungi that can lead to rashes.
It can also help reduce inflammation and decrease itchiness as well as repair skin barrier.
7.6. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil (Melaleuca alternifolia) one of the essential oils is best known as one of the popular home remedies known to treat minor infections, and antibacterial and anti inflammatory effects.
Tea tree oil is extracted by steam distillation.
7.6.1. How to Go About It
- Tea tree oil can be used in various ways but always remember to dilute it prior to its use.
- Mix a few drops of tea tree oil with castor, coconut or olive oil.
- Clean your body and apply it on the desired area.
- Or you can mix it with your medicated creams, moisturizers or even shampoos.
- Leave it for 30-60 minutes and rinse it off thoroughly.
7.6.2. How Does It Help
Tea tree oil is believed to treat various skin conditions such as rash, skin irritation, dandruff, heat rash, bug bites and joint pain.
According to reports, tea tree oil can treat skin infections caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa.
The cellular structure of bacteria is believed to be broken down by the “terpenes” (unsaturated hydrocarbons) present in tea tree oil.
However, prior to its use, remember to test the product and see if any reaction occurs. Also, never apply tea tree oil on your eyes. It is also not meant for consumption purposes.
7.7. Baking Soda
Our next home remedies include the use of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate).
Along with baking soda being used to get rid of foul odors from closets and refrigerators, it has also been considered a traditional cure for itchy skin, poison ivy, insect bite and skin rashes.
7.7.1. How to Go About It
- In a warm bath, add 1 to 2 cups of baking soda.
- Soak for about 20 minutes.
- An alternative method could be to make a thick paste of baking soda and water and applying it on the rash. Allow it to dry completely.
- Rinse off thoroughly and pat dry. People with sensitive skin are advised to follow up with a moisturizer.
7.7.2. How Does It Help
Baking soda helps restore the pH of your skin.
It also helps reduce and get rid of rashes and calms the skin.
7.8. Use Plants Oil
Plant based oils are effective in treating various skin conditions.
Essential oils are of great help when it comes to the treatment of sensitive skin and rashes, be it a child’s rash or adult’s. These oils give diferent results when applied on skin.
Two of these essential oils are Jojoba oil and olive oil.
7.8.1. How to Go About It
- Apply a few drops of either jojoba oil or olive oil on to your rash.
- Let it absorb overnight.
- Wash off the following day.
7.8.2. How Does It Work
Vitamin E concentration is high in jojoba oil, which the skin can absorb quickly. Due to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory qualities, it assists in keeping the skin well-moisturized, treats rashes, and also aids in atopic dermatitis skin barrier restoration
Olive oil has been recognized for relieving inflammation as well as encouraging wound healing.
7.9. Epsom Salts
Another home remedies that helps to get rid of rashes in Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate).
Epsom salts have long been used to relieve aches and pains in the muscles.
It is also frequently used to treat sore muscles and general body aches.
7.9.1 How to Go About It
- Add 2 cups of Epsom salts to a warm bath.
- Soak yourself for about 15-20 minutes.
- Rinse off thoroughly, pat dry and apply moisturizer.
7.9.2. How Does It Help
Epsom salts have been proven to help reduce inflammation, assist the skin maintain moisture, and improve the function of the skin barrier.
It has anti-inflammatory effects and can be used to treat the itching, swelling, and inflammation brought on by skin rashes.
Getting rid of a rash overnight may not quite be possible since it depends on the kind and degree of the rash, the person’s skin type, and general health.
To avoid such triggers in the future, one can always maintain a good diet plan, drink plenty of water, maintain good skin care and hygiene, as well as try and recognize the allergens that cause rashes.
It is also important to remember that the majority of herbal remedies can have adverse effects as some of these products haven’t had their safety thoroughly studied. Different people have different reactions to certain products, so, it is important you do a patch test 24 hours prior to trying these natural home remedies. If the use of these products tends to worsen your condition, rush to a clinic and seek help of the doctor immediately.