Skin rashes come in all shapes and sizes and have many different causes, ranging from an allergic reactions to rashes caused from bites and stings.
Skin rashes are mostly temporary and self-limiting and with a little tender love and care, most skin rashes can be treated quickly and easily. However, there are some medical conditions that present as a rash on the skin and need professional health care advice.
Alternative names used to describe skin rashes
Skin redness or inflammation; Skin lesion; Rubor; Skin rash; Erythema
Rashes involve changes in the colour or texture of your skin and may or may not be itchy.
Often, the cause of a rash can be determined from its visible characteristics and other symptoms.
Common causes of skin rashes:
Exogenous Causes (causes that are due to some external/environmental factors)
Skin rashes may be caused by any of the following external factors:
Almost anything can cause a skin rash if an individual has an allergic reaction to it. Foods, grasses, perfumes and many other natural and/or synthetic chemicals/compounds may cause the skin to develop a rash.
These types of skin rashes however are relatively easily treated and eliminated, just by avoiding contact with the known allergen and using natural skin care products to soothe the skin.
Endogenous Causes (causes that are due to some physiological response of the body due to a pathogen or other physiological reaction:
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Most skin rashes will improve with gentle skin care and avoiding irritating substances.
For skin rashes that occur as a result of contact with an allergen, a good first aid treatment is the application of pure Lavender oil. Lavender generally alleviates pain, itching and burning sensations and is a great antiseptic.
In the case of Fever Rash, there is nothing other than rest and drinking plenty of fluids to help clean-out your body of the infection and reducing body temperature back to normal.
Alternative medical approach to treating endogenous disorders that result in a skin rash
Most disciplines of alternative medicine will view a skin rash as part of an overall imbalance of the body’s physiology. Rarely will alternative medical approaches focus exclusively on a skin rash without considering possible underlying causes.
Usually, a skin rash indicates that there are some internal factors that are out of balance and the focus of treatment is usually on these internal factors, rather than the symptom of a resulting skin rash.
Chinese medicine, for example, divides skin rashes into several categories and differentiates between concepts such as Yin/Yang, Hot/Cold, Damp-Heat, Cold-Damp, Heat in the blood, etc. and does not provide orthodox medical names. Shingles for example may well be diagnosed as Damp-Heat in the Liver or Spleen, depending on other accompanying symptoms. Regardless of the name, herbalists whether they practice western or Chinese herbal medicine will attempt to re-establish the internal harmony in the body and this usually results in the successful treatment of the skin rash.
It is also important to review the patient’s diet and establish whether improving, modifying or changing their diet would help to re-establish the internal harmony of their body. Any diet should be as high as possible in unprocessed food and include a wide variety of vegetables, fruits, nuts, grains, fish and lean meats together with some dairy foods such as unprocessed cheese. The closer the food you eat is to the way it is found naturally in nature, the better.
Once an appropriate treatment regime including a review and possible modification of your diet is established, the skin rash may also be addressed separately. This is where following a good skin care regime, utilising natural skin care products to treat the rash specifically, can help to reduce the symptoms associated with the skin rash and promote healing of the skin.
Danny Siegenthaler is a doctor of traditional Chinese medicine and together with his wife Susan, a medical herbalist and Aromatherapist, they have created Natural Skin Care Products by Wildcrafted Herbal Products to share their 40 years of combined expertise with you.
They practice Herbal and Chinese medicine at their Wildcrafted Cottage Clinic.
© Wildcrafted Herbal Products 2008