It’s summertime and the living’s easy. The weather is warm and the kids get to play outside instead of being cooped up in the house. But with the increased time spent outside in the heat, kids are also more likely to develop skin sensitivities and rashes.

Here are some of the most common summer skin rashes and how to treat them:

  • Poison oak/poison ivy: An allergic reaction to the sticky oil- known as urushiol- in poison oak, ivy and sumac can cause redness, swelling and blisters. Not to mention it’s incredibly itchy! Make sure you teach your children how to identify harmful leaves. If your child does come into contact with any of the poison varieties, wash their clothes and shoes in soap and water. Wash the area of skin the plant has touched at least 10 minutes after exposure. You can also apply calamine lotion or hydro-cortisone cream to help ease the itchiness.
  • Sunburn: We’ve all seen what a sunburn can look like: red, painful, sometimes itchy or peeling skin that’s hot to the touch. Sun protection is especially critical for young children, as the majority of skin damage and excessive sun often comes in childhood. Look for a lightweight, non-chemical sunscreen to minimize skin and eye irritation!
  • Heat rash: Heat rash is often seen in babies and young children, but can also affect older children. It happens when the sweat gland pores become blocked and sweat can’t escape, resulting in patches of small pink or red bumps. It’s commonly found in places where skin tends to fold, like the neck, elbows, armpits and thighs. Make sure your children are dressed in breathable, cool clothing. Use air conditioning to avoid overheating and keep the skin bare. Ointments and lotions can block the sweat glands more.
  • Eczema: Eczema causes patches of dry and scaly red skin. Although it tends to flare up in the colder months, it can also get worse in the summer because of the dryness from air conditioners and plane rides. Overheating, sweating and chlorine can also cause a flare-up. Make sure to use a fragrance-free moisturizer at least once a day during the summer. Our moisturizing balm has the National Eczema Seal of Acceptance!
  • Insect bites and stings: While our children are outside more, so are insects like bees, wasps, mosquitoes, ants and ticks! Aside from the normal itchy bumps from insect bites, children can also experience hives or rashes. To avoid insect bites and stings, use fragrance-free soaps and avoid wearing brightly-colored clothing. Our Dry Skin Rescue Cream can help relieve the symptoms of bug bites, both in babies and adults.
  • Folliculitis: People usually get folliculitis when bacteria in unclean pools or hot tubs gets into hair follicles on the skin. It results in an uncomfortable itchy, pimply rash which can later turn into small, pus-filled blisters. You can protect your children by avoiding heated pools where you’re not sure if the acid and chlorine levels are properly controlled. If your child does contract folliculitis, it usually goes away on its own. Apply a warm compress to the rash and contact your pediatrician about getting an anti-itch cream.

As always, if symptoms get worse or don’t go away, contact your pediatrician.