Different Types Of Arm Rashes

The list of different types of arm rashes is a long one. There are many things that can irritate the skin, both irritants and allergens, as well as a number of diseases where arm rashes may be only one of the symptoms. We'll list a few of the types and causes of arm rashes here, and go into more detail on some of the more common ones.

Many Different Causes - Arm rashes can simply result form the environment we find ourselves in. Dry skin is a common occurrence in the winter months, especially in areas where the air is cold and the humidity is low. Dry skin will at times cause the skin to flake and when rubbing the skin a rash will sometimes result. Sunburn is another cause of skin rash. When we get sunburned on the arms, we don't necessarily develop a rash from the burn, although we can if it is a severe one. More often than not, when the skin starts to peel and is rubbed, a rash may develop, especially on those with sensitive skin.

Sometimes medication, whether applied topically or taken orally can cause rashes on the arms or elsewhere. Certain medications applied topically to the arms may contain either an irritant or an allergen which can lead to arm rashes. Medications taken orally can also contain an allergen, in which case rashes could appear anywhere.

Arm rashes are a common symptom of several diseases, including measles, chicken pox, syphilis, bacterial meningitis, and HIV. Melanoma or skin cancer often first appears as a small skin rash, usually on an area of the body frequently exposed to the sun, such as the arms.

Sometimes the diseases or disorders causing skin rashes are diseases of the skin itself, such as atopic dermatitis, caused by immune system activity, or contact dermatitis, a type of eczema caused by an external allergen or irritant coming into contact with the skin. Folliculitis, a hair follicle disorder, can cause arm rashes although cases of folliculitis generally tend to show up more in the facial area.

Arm rashes may result from shaving or waxing the skin which can lead to irritation. A wrong choice of deodorant may lead to an underarm rash when the deodorant contains either an allergen or an irritant.

Keratosis Pilaris - A rash most commonly experienced by children goes by the name of keratosis pilaris, or KP for short. KP closely resembles eczema, but unlike eczema does not cause itching. Symptoms of KP are usually small bumps on skin of the arms, and the disease itself is often referred to as having "chicken skin". KP is the result of an abnormal buildup of skin and is generally a condition that eventually goes away.

Heat Rashes - Heat rash is one of the more common arm rashes although there are other arm rashes which are mistakenly called heat rash. Heat rash, as the name implies, results when the skin becomes overheated, either due to outside temperatures or due to the clothing that is being worn. When the skin becomes hot and begins to sweat, and the sweat ducts for any reason become blocked, they can rupture and a rash can develop. In those instances where the ducts become inflamed, there may be a stinging sensation. Arm rashes of this type are said to be due to prickly heat, or miliaria rubra. A similar type of heat rash is miliaria crystallina, though unlike prickly heat, this rash is not the result of inflammation of the sweat glands. Dressing appropriately, especially the wearing of loose clothing, and simply avoiding excessive heat are the best ways to prevent an occurrence of heat rash.

Although arm rashes can be caused either by an allergen, or an irritant, or simply overheating of the skin, treating the condition as an allergy will usually serve in all instances. A cortisone cream or lotion will usually take care of any itching, and application of a moisturizer will act to both soothe the existing condition and prevent its recurrence. Some care must be taken when treating infants in that application of some topical lotions could cause sweat gland blockage and bring on an incident of heat rash.

In all instances of arm rashes, try to avoid scratching the skin if itching is present, as this tends to irritate the skin more, and can lead to an infection.