Some readers might not want to admit that you tuned in to the episode of “Keeping up with the Kardashians” this week on the E! Channel but if you did then you can relate to this article because you saw it live from your TV! This week’s episode was focused on Kim Kardashian and a skin disorder that she developed called Psoriasis- a red blotchy looking rash on the body. This Beauty Examiner has encountered many people with similar skin issues and has been asked about a solution to these unsightly problems several times.
The term rash has no real true meaning because it refers to a variety of skin disorders and it is any inflammatory condition of the skin. Although some are not curable and very persistent, there are many treatments to help ease the symptoms of these irritating skin problems. This Beauty Examiner wants to break down the list and give some information of a few common skin issues that many people develop on their body.
Non-infectious rashes on the skin are common and not caused by infectious organisms. They are usually easily treated with an over the counter Hydrocortisone cream (usually 1%) for a week prior to medical attention. Identifying what the rash is and noting the density, color, size, consistency, tenderness, and shape can help your doctor diagnose the problem correctly if medical attention is necessary.
Included in the non-infectious category is Seborrheic Dermatitis. This is the single most common rash affecting adults and it produces redness and scaling that is usually found on the scalp, forehead, brows, cheeks, and ears.
Atopic Dermatitis is commonly referred to as Eczema. This is a common disorder for both children and adults and produces a red, itchy, rash that can be on the inner elbows, back of the knees, cheeks, neck, wrists, and ankles. A contributing cause for this can be asthma and hay fever.
Contact Dermatitis is a rash that occurs after contact with a certain chemical or a substance that your body is allergic to. This affects parts of the skin that have come directly in contact with the substance. A good example of this is poison ivy or poison oak, reactions to jewelry or a perfume.
Psoriasis, the skin disorder that the famous Kim Kardashian has now come out to declare, is a bumpy scaling of the skin that can occur on the scalp, elbows, and knees, and can also cover other areas of the body depending on severity. Overproduction of skin cells is what has been linked to this disorder. This disorder is an autoimmune disorder and is usually inherited. Research indicated that up to 7.5 million adults have this affecting women and men equally. There is no known cure (although not contagious); several treatments can control the severity of the problem. This is a rash that can lay dormant, disappear, and then come back on the body at different times as well. Contributing factors can be due to stress, food choices, genetics, etc…
There are several infectious rashes of the skin that are caused by fungal infections. These are fairly common but do not appear nearly as often as rashes on the non-infectious list. It is also important to know that developing these fungal infections (such as Ringworm and yeast infections discussed below) have little to do with a person’s hygiene.
Ringworm can be passed from person to person by sharing combs and brushes, other personal care items or clothing, also said to be caught occasionally from the gym locker room, poolside, not wearing shoes in the showers. Ringworm is caused by fungi that can live on the dead layer on top of the skin. Rarely invading deeper into the body and cannot live in mucous membranes such as the mouth or vagina.
Yeast infections are very common and are commonly present on normal human skin in areas of moisture, such as the mouth or vagina. A yeast infection is not considered an STD (sexually transmitted disease). An estimated 20-50% of healthy women normally carry yeast in the body. Women and men can develop symptoms from yeast infections. A good preventative measure for this is adding Probiotics into your daily vitamin/supplement routine.
Jock itch and Athletes Foot are common fungal infections and will be found where the body is moist, warm, and can become irritated. Fungi can thrive and infect the upper layers of the skin almost anywhere on the body. Up to 70% of the population may have this problem some time in their lives and most are prone to recurrences in their lifetime.
The best solutions for these problems as they start to occur is to stop, don’t panic, and take notice of how the area looks, feels, and the shape of the affected area. Most likely the issue is a non-contagious reaction to something that you came in contact with. The best advice is to seek medical attention if the problem persists more than a few days. Hydrocortisone cream (1% over the counter), Benadryl (over the counter), and a cold compress are the first line of defense against an irritating rash. If after this at home treatment the condition has not improved, a doctor should be consulted for prescription medication to remedy the issue.