The hot summer sun is out and your kids are practically begging you to let them play outside.
However, the summer heat can put your kids at risk for developing a prickly heat rash. This usually occurs under the following factors:
- Hot and humid weather
- Intense physical activity
- Fabrics that do not allow sweat to evaporate from the skin
- Using oils, ointments, or thick creams that can block sweat ducts
- Prescription medications that may increase sweating
Prickly heat rash appear as tiny bumps surrounded by red, irritated skin. Some cases of heat rash can be prickly or itchy, but is typically not painful. It will usually affect the chest and back.
If you suspect your child has developed a prickly heat rash, begin the cool-down process immediately with these steps:
- Get your child out of the heat and into a cooler space
- Try cooling him/her with a fan
- Remove any extra pieces of clothing your child may be wearing, and/or loosen it
- Use a cool, damp cloth on the skin to wipe away sweat and body oils. Make sure to dry off afterwards.
Avoid using any lotions, ointments, or creams on your child’s skin. This could only further block the pores, keep moisture in, and make the prickly heat rash worse.
As much as possible, try to dress your child in breathable fabrics to allow circulation of air and evaporation of sweat, especially in the hot summer months. This will help keep your child’s skin dry and cool, and prevent prickly heat rash.
Prickly heat rash usually goes away by itself in a few days. If it doesn’t, be sure to have your child checked by your pediatrician for medical care.
Read the full article by Cleveland Clinic here for more information on prickly heat rash and how to treat it.