How to Treat Heat Rash

How to Treat Heat Rash

Dermatologist

Overheating can cause heat rash. To stay cool when you're in the sun, wear clothes made from cotton or other moisture-wicking fabrics. Or, wear UV protective clothing, which blocks the sun's rays and keeps you comfortable. If you're already suffering from heat rash, apply topical aloe gel and 1 percent hydrocortisone cream twice a day to keep the area cool and dry. To get relief from itching, try an over-thecounter antihistamine like Benadryl or Claritin. Talcum powders like Zeasorb- AF can also help soothe the itch and sting. Don't use cornstarch-based powder; it can cause yeast to grow, which could worsen the rash. If the rash doesn't clear after two or three weeks, see a dermatologist or physician. -Doris J. Day, M.D., clinical assistant professor of dermatology at New York University Medical Center

TCM Practitioner

According to TCM principles, heat rash is an outward sign of an internal temperature imbalance. If you have heat rash, avoid eating spicy foods or sugar, drinking hot beverages or alcohol, or taking hot showers or baths-all behaviors that generate heat in the body. Prepare a cooling herbal tea with one tablespoon of peppermint leaves and two tablespoons of chrysanthemum flowers in three cups of boiling water. Steep it for 20 minutes, then strain and cool to room temperature; drink half a cup every few hours until the rash clears. Or, ask a Chinese medicine practitioner for Yin Chiao, an herbal preparation that treats allergies and rashes. Take four tablets by mouth every four hours for up to two days. -Efrem Korngold, O.M.D., a Chinese medicine practitioner and a Natural Health advisor

Homeopath

Blocked sweat glands trap perspiration deep within the dermis , causing heat rash. To prevent it, keep problem areas clean and dry. If you already have heat rash, homeopathy can help alleviate it. A potent preparation of stinging nettle (Urtica urens), a weed that in the wild could cause your skin to burn and itch, can help cure conditions like rashes. Take 30C of stinging nettle every few hours; once you begin to see improvement, stop using the remedy. If there's no improvement after two or three doses, you can try other homeopathic remedies like sulphur, which is used for chronic skin conditions that worsen in the heat, and apis (also known as honeybee), which is good for hives and swollen tissues. -Molly Punzo, M.D., a homeopath in Maryland and spokesperson for the National Center for Homeopathy