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Noticed red bumps and experiencing itching? Here’s what you need to know.


An uncomfortable and itchy skin condition that happens when sweat is trapped under the skin. Prickly heat occurs in 4% of neonates and up to 30% of people of all ages.

  • Anyone can fall prey to prickly heat irrespective of age.
  • It usually heals on its own in a few weeks.
  • Doesn’t usually call for medical action.
  • It is self-diagnosable.

Prickly heat is mostly caused in hot and humid weather due to excessive sweating. This leads to the formation of red bumps on the skin and itching. Underdeveloped sweat glands, especially in babies can be another reason. People confined to the bed are also susceptible to prickly heat. It is self-treatable and usually clears up in a few days.

Ages affected - All individuals irrespective of age are affected.



A person gets heat rash usually in skin folds and in places where there is friction with clothes. The common areas include armpits, shoulders, chest, groin.

People may experience

Red bumps - Armpits, shoulders, chest, groin, face, elbow creases.

Itching - in the areas where the rash develops.

Inflamed pustules - caused occasionally due to excessive scratching leading to bacterial infection.


Self-Care: Opting for a fan or an air conditioner, wearing loose fitting clothes, having cold showers, drinking plenty of fluids all help beat prickly heat. It is important to keep the affected area dry. Applying calamine lotion is an effective method to treat heat rash.

Medication: Over the counter topical steroids, and hydrocortisone creams (not advised for children under 10 years and pregnant women without a medical prescription) can be used to treat prickly heat.

Specialists: A physician or a dermatologist should be consulted when the area gets infected with pustules causing increased itching and inflammation, there is swelling of lymph nodes in the armpit, neck or groin or when one gets fever or chills. Being a collective of the best experts in the field of medicine, mfine helps resolve all your health queries. Be a part of mfine and have a one stop solution for your health woes.

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