Rash on arms and legs can be painful and cause a lot of discomfort. The causes for the rash can vary from environmental causes such as sunlight, allergic reactions, fungal and viral infection. The rash could be red, itchy and at times just small bumps that are not itchy. This article will provide you with the causes, symptoms and how to get rid of them
Rash on arms and legs also known as Contact dermatitis or atopic eczema (atopic dermatitis) is a type of inflammation of the skin. It results in itchy, red, swollen and cracked skin. Clear fluid may come out from the affected areas, which may thicken over time. Scratching worsens the symptoms and you risk having skin infections. If early precaution is not taken, then you may develop hay fever or asthma.
You should see your health care provider to be advised on best form of medication. However, there exist some home remedy with which you can use to sooth your skin and reduce the itchiness and pain,. They include applying aloe Vera on the surface of the rash. Otherwise the best possible way is you need to identify and avoid the cause of your reaction.
Rash on arms and legs pictures
In this page, we have inserted pictures for illustration on how the rash on arms and legs appear. This is to help you understand much better and identify well with your symptoms. Find out in the post for more pictures and images.
What Can Cause Rash on Arms and Legs?
There are many causes that might result in rash in arms and legs. The most common cause include:
1. Rash on arms and legs after swimming
This particular condition is caused by allergic reaction to waterborne parasites which burrow themselves in the upper layer of the skin. It leads to itchy or burning rash with bumps or blisters. It is not usually serious and improves within a week without medical intervention. Repeated exposure to infected water can increase sensitivity, yet cause worse symptoms.
Skin sensitivity to chlorine can present the following symptoms:
- Skin redness, tenderness, inflammation, and/or itchiness at the site of contact
- Skin lesions or rash
- Scales or crust on the skin
Any time you suspect a severe allergic reaction seek immediate emergency care. Skin sensitivity is typically treated by washing the affected area with clean water to try to remove any traces of the remaining irritant.
2. Rash on arms and legs after sun burn
Sunburn is a condition that occurs when the amount of exposure to the sun or another ultraviolet light source exceeds the ability of the body’s protective pigment (melanin) to protect the skin. Symptoms of sunburn include painful, reddened skin; however, sunburn may not be immediately apparent. By the time the skin starts to become painful and red, the damage has been done. Severe sunburn may result in swelling and blisters.
To treat or ease the discomfort of sunburn:
- Apply a cold compress to the affected area.
- Take aspirin or acetaminophen (Tylenol) immediately after exposure to the sun to relieve sunburn discomfort and inflammation.
- Apply a cooling gel or ointment containing aloe Vera to the sunburned area or areas.
- Avoid further sun exposure until the discomfort resolves.
3. Insect bites
If you have rashes after bug bites, you should be concerned about the possibility of transmitting diseases. Usually, people are bitten by ticks or fleas and mosquito. You should see a doctor for antimalarial drugs.
4. Allergic reaction
Allergic reaction of medicines, topical lotions, detergents and foods can cause rash on arms and legs. The rash can range from mild and minor symptoms to life-threatening cases that an anaphylactic shock is presented, which can be started with swelling and constriction of the nasal passage, making breathing difficult and thus is life threatening.
5. Medication reaction
Medications can cause drug rash due to allergic reactions, side effects or skin’s sensitivity to sunlight after taking certain medicals. Common drugs that can cause rashes on arms and legs include anti-seizure medications, antibiotics, or diuretics. Usually, this kind of rash will fade away within one week when taking a new medication, or after several days of stopping take such medications.
Psoriasis is a skin condition where cells grow at a faster rate than they can be shed, causing excess skin to build up and form scaly patches on the body. It is seen usually on the scalp and on joints and is characterized by an itchy, scaly red rash.
Steroid creams or ointments (topical corticosteroids) are commonly used to treat mild to moderate psoriasis in most areas of the body. The treatment works by reducing inflammation. This slows the production of skin cells and reduces itching.
Urticaria or hives shows a pale or pink swelling like rash which appears suddenly, along with burning, itchy or stingy sensation. Lasting from a few days to weeks, it can affect any part of the body, and as many as 20% of people experience hives at least once in their life. Mostly, it is caused due to certain allergens, therefore, it is best to avoid the allergen and take anti-histamines
8. Contact dermatitis
Contact Dermatitis, as one type of eczema, is caused when the skin comes in contact with various products like soaps, detergent, cosmetics, etc. It could also be caused by cloth dyes or chemicals present in elastic, latex and rubber. Poison oak, ivy or sumac is poisonous plants which can cause contact dermatitis
Eczema is a general term that describe several different conditions in which skin is inflamed, red, scaly and itchy. The most common type is atopic dermatitis also called atopic eczema. It can occur in adults or children and it is not contagious.
The cause of atopic eczema is not known, but the condition often affects people with a family history of allergies. Many individuals with eczema also have hay fever and/or asthma or have family members with those conditions.
Allergic asthma is asthma caused by an allergic reaction. It’s also known as allergy-induced asthma. You may have allergic asthma if you have trouble breathing during allergy season. If you have hay fever or skin allergies, you might also experience:
- itchy skin
- flaky skin
Treating allergic asthma can involve treating the allergy, the asthma, or both. To treat your asthma, your doctor may prescribe inhaled anti-inflammatory medication or oral medications that help block the allergic response.
Itchy rash on arms and legs
Rashes are characterized by red and itchy skin, often accompanied by small bumps and often change in the skin color. Those occurring on arms and legs causes an irritating problem and could be as a result of eczema, psoriasis, allergies, insect bites such as mites and mosquito, excessive sweating or contact with certain poisonous plant such as ivy or oak. Soap, detergents, shampoo or cosmetic that do not suit your skin can also lead to rashes on legs and arms.
Rash on arms and legs may be a symptom of certain fungal, bacterial, or viral infections as well. If you have a rash that does not improve or go away within a few days, you should consult your health care provider. Treating the underlying cause of the rash might help cure the rashes and get rid of them faster.
Red itchy rash on legs
Having a red rash on legs could be a symptom of Eczema, or atopic dermatitis, which occurs in people with asthma or allergies. If you have had the rash for more than two days and its itchy then you should seek the attendance of a medical practitioner as soon as possible to avoid contamination given that it could be a sing of an underlying medical problem, at time it could be as a result of a hereditary condition, otherwise home remedies might serve to reduce the irritation and itchiness for the time being.
Olive oil which is rich in vitamin E and antioxidant will help soothe your skin and reduce itching. A combination of olive oil and honey is also recommended. You could also use baking soda which help dry the skin rash, it reduces the itching and inflammation associated with the rashes. (You should not leave baking soda on your skin for long as this would cause further irritation).
Aloe Vera with anti-inflammation, emollient, antibacterial and antifungal properties is an excellent choice of treatment. Apart from healing, it also soothes the skin, relieving itching and reduce the redness of the rash. Of importance to note is that, you should see a doctor to rule out on the danger of contingency for condition such as chicken pox.
Red rash on legs only
A leg rash is an inflammatory reaction of the skin on the legs that may extend to the feet. Leg rashes can be caused by a wide variety of mild to serious diseases, disorders and conditions. Leg rashes can affect a small to large area of one or both legs and can occur in all age groups and population.
Leg rashes vary greatly in appearance, extent and severity depending on the underlying cause. Leg rashes may or may not be itchy and can be red, white, purple or silver in color. The texture of a leg rash can be flat, raised, bumpy or scaly and include flaking off or peeling of skin cells. Leg rashes can also appear as dots or spots or occur over a large, solid continuous area.
A leg rash can be a sign of a relatively minor condition, such as irritant contact dermatitis caused by exposure to an irritating substance. It can also be caused by an allergic. Other causes of leg rashes include viral infections, autoimmune disorders, and varicose veins. Leg and foot rashes are also a complication of poorly managed diabetes and peripheral artery disease, which can cause skin changes due to poor blood flow to the extremities.
Leg rashes can have several serious causes. A rash of purple spots on the legs or other areas can indicate a potentially serious condition, such as allergic purpura. Any rash that is associated with allergies combined with shortness of breath, wheezing, or swelling of the face, mouth or throat is a symptom of a serious, potentially life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. You need to seek immediate medical care.
Rash on arms and legs baby
Depending with the duration of the rash, those appearing on legs and arms would be as result of the either bacterial, fungal, allergic reaction or sun burns. Sun burns on baby might be serious than it appears so you need to see your doctor as soon as possible. The following could help reduce the itchiness and the irritation caused by the burns;
- Your baby is probably dehydrated from being out in the sun, so make sure she or she drinks plenty of fluids. Give him/her plenty of breastmilk or formula. Formula-fed babies and babies on solids can have extra water, too.
- Soothe the sunburned area. Soak a clean cloth nappy, flannel or muslin square in cool water, wring it out, and gently place it on the sunburned area for 10 to 15 minutes a few times a day. Just make sure your baby doesn’t get chilly. Don’t put ice or iced water on your baby’s skin as the cold can burn her skin.
- Let your baby soak in a tepid bath. You could add a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda to the water to make it more soothing.
- Apply a water-based moisturizing lotion, aloe Vera gel or calamine lotion to relieve itching, which can happen when the burn starts to peel.
- You may like to give your baby something that will help to ease her pain and bring down her fever, if she has one. Your baby can have infant paracetamol from two months if she was born after 37 weeks and weighs over 4kg (9lb). Or she can have infant ibuprofen if she is three months or older and weighs at least 5kg (11lb).
It’s best not to rub petroleum-based products, such as petroleum jelly, on your baby’s burnt skin. Oily products prevent heat and sweat from escaping and can worsen a burn. Also avoid first-aid sprays or ointments that contain benzocaine, which can cause irritation or an allergic reaction.
Peeling usually begins three days to 10 days after the sunburn. Don’t be alarmed when it happens, peeling is a natural part of the healing process. Just make sure your baby stays in the shade until her skin has healed. Dress her in loose cotton clothing that won’t irritate her sensitive skin.
Rash on arms and legs only not itchy
Depending on the causes of your rash, at time rash on the arms and legs may not be itchy. The most common causes of itch less rash on arms and legs would include:
- Acne, a long-term skin disease that occurs when hair follicles become clogged with dead skin cells and oil from the skin. Acne is characterized by areas of blackheads, whiteheads, pimples, and greasy skin, and may result in scarring
- Bejel (a form of non-sexually transmitted syphilis): non-itchy mouth and skin sores, caused by a bacterium Treponema, transmitted via utensils, mainly among children in the Middle East and Africa
- Campbell-De Morgan spots are small, red, raised, cherry angiomas, few mm in diameter, appearing on arms, neck, and upper chest and back; they are common, harmless, and easy to remove with a laser
- Juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, often referred to by doctors today as juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA), is a type of arthritis that causes joint inflammation and stiffness for more than six weeks in a child aged 16 or younger
Rash on arms and legs itchy small bumps
An itch is often caused by a condition affecting the skin, but it can be a sign of more serious underlying problem. In some cases, it may not be possible to identify a specific cause. An itchy rash on arms and legs could thus mean you have an underlying medical problem. You need to see your health care provide as soon as possible.
When a rash appears on your arms and legs, the skin can become red, swollen and blotchy. It can also appear in the form of spots, which could be pus filled or simply be scaly, flaky or bumpy. A rash can appear anywhere, in any pattern and different extent. Rash on arms and legs could be due to a variety of reasons: be localized or due to a systemic condition.
Aloe Vera with anti-inflammation, emollient, antibacterial and antifungal properties is an excellent choice of treatment. But you need to see your health care provider if the itchiness persists and the rashes do not go away after two days. Applying Olive Oil will help sooth your skin and ease the itching.
Skin rash on legs and arms treatment
The treatment of rash on legs and arms can be done by both using home remedies and doctor’s prescription (which is most advised if the rash do not disappear after one week). For home remedy the following would help reduce the irritation and itchiness;
- Applying olive oil on the legs and arms part with rash. Olive oil Is rich in vitamin E and antioxidants, which help soothe your skin and reduce itching. You could also use a combination of olive oil and honey. Simply rub the mixture a few times daily until the rash heal completely.
- Castor oil and coconut oil also help heal rashes naturally. A combination of vitamin E oil and liver oil is thus a good remedy.
- You could also use baking soda, which help dry skin rashes. It also relieves the itching and inflammation associated with rashes. Add a 50 grams of baking soda to 150 milliliters of water. Apply the mixture on the affected area, leave it on for a few minutes before rising it off. Do this repeatedly for a few days. Note you can use coconut oil in place of water to make a paste that you can apply on the affected area.
You should not leave baking soda on your skin for long as this would cause further irritation
- Due to the soothing and anti-inflammatory properties of oatmeal, it’s good for alleviating skin irritation and inflammation. It’s thus excellent for rashes caused by eczema, sun burn, chicken pox and allergies. Grind oatmeal in a blender, combine one-half cup of oatmeal, a quarter cup of milk powder and two tea spoon of honey. Put this mixture in a muslin cloth, tie and place it in a bath tab filled with warm water. Soak in the milky bath water for 20 minutes. Pat dry and moisturize your skin, repeat daily for a few days.
- Aloe Vera has anti-inflammatory, emollient, antibacterial and antifungal properties. It’s excellent for treating number of skin ailments including rashes. Apart from healing, it also soothes the skin, relieves itching and reduce redness.
- Extract fresh Aloe Vera gel from an aloe leaf.
- Apply it on the affected area.
- Leave it on for at least 20 minutes, and then rinse it off.
- Do this at least three times a day until the rash clears.
If you do not have fresh aloe Vera gel, you can buy aloe Vera gel or extract from any retail store near you.
- A cold compress can be beneficial in reducing rashes, especially those caused by heat, insect bites, poison ivy and shingles. It helps ease itching, swelling and inflammation, and can be particularly useful if a rash begins to develop into blisters.
- Raw and organic apple cider vinegar is another excellent home remedy to treat skin rashes and calm the itching. Moreover, its acetic acid content helps fight skin infections that could be causing or aggravating the problem.
- Dip a cotton ball in apple cider vinegar and place it on the affected area.
- Leave it on for a few minutes, and then remove the cotton ball.
- Do this several times a day for a few days or until your rash clears.
Note: If apple cider vinegar causes irritation, try diluting it with water before applying it. If the irritation persists, then try another remedy.
Natural Home Remedies To Get Rid Of Skin Rash Video
Sources and reference
- Rash on Arms and Legs: http://www.newhealthadvisor.com/Rash-on-Arms-and-Legs.html
- Rashes: http://www.healthyskinmd.com/general-derm/rashes
- Skin Rashes in Children:http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/skin-rash-children/Pages/Introduction.aspx
- Skin Rash: http://www.healthline.com/health/rashes