Heat rash is an itchy rash of small red spots that cause a
stinging or prickling feeling on the skin. Sometimes it’s called
The heat rash can be anywhere on the body, but typically
people get it on their face, chest, back and thighs.
It is caused by sweat glands becoming blocked, so people usually
get the rash if they are sweating more than usual. This could be
because of hot or humid weather or because they’re wearing too many
clothes, which irritate the rash more by rubbing it. The trapped
sweat irritates the skin and produces the rash.
Heat rash is not serious. It usually goes away after a few days
so it doesn’t need medical treatment.
Watch our video - heat rash
What to look for - heat rash
If you think someone has heat rash, these are the four things to
- 1. Itching
- 2. Rash of tiny red spots
- 3. Mild swelling
- 4. Prickling or burning feeling
What you need to do - heat rash
• If they have these symptoms, you can explain that the
rash is not serious but give them tips on how to soothe the itching
and avoid getting heat rash in the future.
• Suggest they take a cold bath or shower to cool their
skin and help prevent further sweating.
• They can also buy calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream
which will help soothe the itching.
• Recommend they wear loose clothing made of cotton, as
cotton doesn’t trap heat as much as synthetic fibres, like nylon
• Tell them to drink plenty of water to stop them getting
• And suggest they avoid excessive heat or humidity, by
staying out of the sun and not sitting too close to a fire or
heater, for instance.