Common Summer Skin Issues

Common Summer Skin Issues Jul 9, 2020 / by Complete Family Dermatology Team

You likely know that sunburn is a risky thing in the summertime, and know you should wear protective clothing and sunscreen, while also limiting your time in the sun. But, there are other issues to look out for once the weather starts heating up besides sunburn. 

Heat Rash

When it gets hot out, you begin to sweat more. If you sweat too much, then your skin’s sweat ducts can become inflamed. You will likely feel small, itchy bumps on your skin, especially in areas where clothing touches your skin. This condition is often known as prickly heat. This is because you often feel a prickling sensation when sweat is released. While the condition can resolve itself in a few days, you can try hydrocortisone cream or cold compresses for relief more quickly. 

Poison Oak and Poison Ivy

It’s not uncommon to be allergic to poison oak or poison ivy. This is because the plant has urushiol oil in it. When the urushiol oil contacts your skin, it might feel itchy or develop blisters. You might come into contact with the plants directly, like if you are hiking or gardening. Or you might get it indirectly by touching something that has come in contact with the plant. If you have the urushiol oil on part of your body, it can spread when you touch different areas. But the rash itself is not contagious. You can take over-the-counter medications, like hydrocortisone to ease the rash, but you will likely feel greater relief by going to your dermatologist for a prescription steroid to apply to the area. 

Sun Poisoning

Of course, getting a sunburn isn’t wonderful for the overall health of your skin. If you have had at least six sunburns in your life, then you may be more likely to get melanoma, a form of skin cancer. Think of sun poisoning as a more extreme type of sunburn. In many cases, sun rash is associated with sun poisoning. The rash is similar to the one you get with hives. Some of the other symptoms include peeling and blisters, as well as nausea, headaches, and dehydration. You can prevent this condition by putting on extra sunscreen. It’s also a good idea to seek out the shade whenever you can. 

Dry or Irritated Skin

Even if it is humid and hot outside, your skin might still become dry and irritated. The three biggest reasons for this are the pool, sun, and air conditioning. Luckily, you can try to avoid this condition. As soon as you get out of the pool, use clean water and moisturizing body soap to wash the chlorine off your skin. This soap should be mild. If it is labeled as “antibacterial,” it is more likely to dry out your skin. Make sure that the water is warm instead of hot. When you get out of the shower, put on a fragrance-free moisturizer. It can trap water against your skin, so you should put it on no more than five minutes after getting out of the shower. Apply a water-resistant sunscreen before you go outside to prevent sun damage to your skin. Again, it should have an SPF of at least 30.  Finally, if the AC in your home makes the air too dry, consider turning the thermostat up and turning on a fan. You can also use a humidifier to put more moisture in the air inside your home.  Over-the-counter products may help with some of these conditions. But if one of these issues begins to impact your daily routine, it is important to make an appointment with the dermatologists at Complete Family Dermatology. We can help with your summer skin conditions, so feel free to reach out to us at any time! 

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