A sweat rash differs from a prickly heat rash because it involves fungal activity on the skin. More information on this type of rash is provided below. However, the term sweat rash is sometimes used to describe this type of rash. A prickly heat skin rash, characterized by tiny red spots on the skin, is also known by several other terms such as: prickly heat, heat rash, and miliaria.
A prickly heat rash is initiated by exposure to hot temperatures and humid conditions that lead to excessive sweating and blockage or inflammation of the skin sweat ducts. This causes sweat to be trapped under the skin and this in turn irritates the skin causing a prickly skin rash to develop.
The rash that develops is rather painful and uncomfortable. It is red and is itchy and prickly or in other words the rash produces a stinging type sensation. It occurs most often in covered skin areas that tend to sweat more such as under the breasts, the groin area, armpits, etc. This type of skin rash can affect any person in any age group, but because the sweat glands of children are not fully developed, they tend to experience the prickly heat skin rash more often that adults.
Miliaria heat rash can be classified into different categories depending on the extent to which the sweat glands are blocked. Miliaria rubra is the most common and occurs when sweat leaks into the deeper layers of the epidermis. Miliaria crystalline is a mild form of the heat rash and produces only small tiny blister like pimples with no intense itching or stinging. Miliaria profunda occurs when the sweat gland obstruction is much deeper in the skin matrix and causes more intense symptoms than miliaria rubra.
A sweat rash is typically characterized by a red rash on the skin that is sore, inflamed, and has an itchy and/or burning sensation to it. In addition, the skin is usually quite moist, and the surface of the skin may be broken in some areas. This type of rash is normally found in areas of the body that are most likely to trap perspiration or sweat and heat such as the skin folds.
This type of rash may also develop on skin areas that experience repeated friction. Therefore, the skin areas on the body that are most often affected by this common skin rash are: under the breasts, the folds in the groin region, the back of the elbows, behind the knees, and of course, under the arms. Very active individuals such as those who participate in sports on a regular basis, people who tend to always sweat excessively even in non physical activities, as well as overweight individuals, are the group of people that tend to be affected most by this type of rash. However, this skin rash can occur with any person in any age group.
This sweat skin rash develops because the yeast that is normally present on the skin in the correct amount combines with the excess moisture caused by sweating and then starts to grow in population. This excess yeast on the skin causes the sweat skin rash problem.
Treatment will prevent the spread of the rash and development of a fungal skin infection. Treatment involves keeping the skin cool and dry and perhaps the use of anti-fungal medication to reduce the candida yeast population to a normal value.
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