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What Kind Of Rash Is That?

A “rash” is a kind of red bump that forms on your body and could be caused due to a variety of reasons. This word is freely used in normal language to denote a number of

Rash caused by an unusual reaction. Taken by E...

Rash caused by an unusual reaction. Taken by Enoch Lau on 20 December 2004. As a courtesy, please let me know if you alter this image or this image description page. Original filename was 100_3874.JPG. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

skin conditions. Most commonly occurring skin conditions or skin rash types are:

  • Non infected scaly patches on the skin.
  • Scaly patches on skin caused by fungal or bacterial infection.
  • Red, itchy patches or bumps all over the skin.

Skin rashes are rarely classified as dangerous, but still warrant medical attention. Rashes should not be self-diagnosed. Proper evaluation of the skin rash type requires a doctor visit. The following list of skin rash types may help you to categorize the condition.

Non infected scaly patches on the skin:

Scaly and itchy skin rash type usually represents a condition known as eczema.
Atopic dermatitis: The most common form of eczema is known as Atopic dermatitis. This skin rash type is normally hereditary which often starts in childhood with symptoms like scaly patches on the arms, legs, scalp and torso. During teenage the condition of atopic dermatitis may spread to inner elbows and knees. Adults are affected by atopic dermatitis on the genitals, around the eyelids, on the hand and all over the body as well.

“Dermatitis” means skin inflammation. “Atopic” refers to hereditary diseases. These diseases may include hay fever, asthma and atopic dermatitis. In a condition of atopic dermatitis, the skin turns extremely itchy and inflamed which may cause redness, swelling and cracking. Atopic dermatitis affects off and on for no apparent reason. It is at its worst in winter months, when the air becomes cold and dry.

Contact dermatitis: Contact dermatitis is a skin rash type caused due to contact with a specific material which may cause allergy to the skin. For example poison ivy and jewelry containing nickel causes reactions. Contact dermatitis affects only the touched parts.

The other kinds of skin rash types are scaly rashes. The ones worth mentioning are psoriasis, also a hereditary condition affecting knees, elbows and pityriasis rosea, which forms scaly rashes on the chest and back and generally disappears in a month. Xerosis or very dry skin, may appear as rash during the cold, dry months of the year.

Scaly patches on skin caused by fungal or bacterial infection:

Fungal infections: Fungal infections are common but don’t appear as often as rashes in the eczema category. Fungal infections are not due to hygiene, clean people are also prone to them. The fungal infection skin rash type is not caught from animals, nor is it transmitted in gyms, showers or pools. They are not contagious.

Bacterial infections: The most common skin rash type caused by bacterial infection is impetigo. Impetigo is caused by strep germs and is more common in children. This again is not due to poor hygiene.
Red, itchy patches or bumps all over the skin: 
Viral rash: Viral infections of the skin like herpes mostly occurs on one part of the body, viral rashes also occur all over the body and are symmetrical. These viral rashes usually last about a week and vanish on their own.
Allergic drug rash: Rashes caused due to drug allergy start in about two weeks of a new medication. It is very unlikely that a medicine which has been prescribed for a few months or years to cause a reaction. There is no specific test to prove whether a rash is allergic as a result of which doctors recommend stopping a suspected drug to see the results.

Other rashes:
Hives or Urticaria are red welts that are itchy. They appear and disappear on different parts of the body. Because of the vagueness of the term, most people use “rash” to describe the conditions of pimples or rosacea on the facial skin. They certainly do not fall into any skin rash types.

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