During pregnancy, due to the changes in hormones and body, the skin becomes very sensitive and this leads to irritation causing rashes. This is called the pregnancy rash. A pregnant lady could also get hives and rashes on arms, bosom and other body as well. Usually such rashes are not harmful but sometimes it may be of serious concern. Therefore it is important that the rashes should be checked by a skin specialist. It may occur at any phase of the pregnancy period.
Symptoms of Pregnancy Rash
Some of the symptoms of pregnancy rash are:
- Fever and chills
- Loss of hair
- Loose stools
- Pain in joints
- Itching and burning sensation in groins, folds of knees, elbows and armpits.
Causes of Pregnancy Rash
There are two major causes for pregnancy rash namely:
- Stretching of the skin: During the different period of pregnancy the skin stretches which cause pregnancy rash.
- Changes in hormones: During the development period of pregnancy there are changes in hormones which lead to pregnancy rash causing irritation and uneasiness.
Types of Pregnancy Rash
The different types of pregnancy rash are:
- Heat Rash: During the pregnancy period the body perspires a lot and the skin gets rubbed against the clothes generating excess heat. This in turn leads to rashes below the breast and in the folds of the stomach. Such rashes can also affect the genital parts and thigh.
- Hives and Itchy feeling: During pregnancy the skin becomes dry which causes itchiness and it may spread to other parts of the body which further may lead to hives.
- Impetigo Herpetiformis: This type of pregnancy rash has pus in it and it is in cluster. It affects the armpits and groins. Also along with the rashes the woman suffers from burning sensation.
- Melasma: Melasma appears in brown color and affects the face. It is more like pigmentation than pregnancy rash which occurs due to the changes in hormones and the different medicines taken throughout the pregnancy period. It is not damaging and does not cause itchiness but melasma occurs till the closing stages of pregnancy period.
- PUPPP: PUPPP is pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy. This type of rashes is seen as an elevated on the stomach inside the stretch marks. It is usually seen subsequent to the thirty fourth week of the pregnancy period. It can increase affecting other parts like hands and buttock. It vanishes after the child is born. Here is more information on PUPPS rash
- Papular Dermatitis: It is an uncommon rash. They are reddish spots causing extreme itchiness with layer on it. It does not occur in clusters and can occur at any period of pregnancy.
- Prurigo: They are red spots causing itchiness and appear on the upper chest and hands and legs. It occurs on the stretch mark and is seen on the second and last week of the pregnancy period. After the child is born these spots spread to the whole body however it vanishes in 3 or more weeks.
- Pruritic Folliculitis: It is a rare pregnancy rash and is like same as prurigo rash. It looks like steroid induced acne. Mainly the chest is affected.
Treatment for Pregnancy Rash
For different pregnancy rash different treatments are opted. They are as follows:
Melasma can be cured by using cream given by the doctor.
- Heat rashes can be treated with prickly heat cream as per the prescription by the doctor. Also cold water bath is advised. However if cold water bath cannot be taken then lukewarm water can be used for bathing. Hot water increases the itchy feeling and make the skin look more red increasing the rashes. After bath the woman has to dry herself nicely with a soft cloth and later rash cream should be applied to soothe itchiness. But if the pregnancy rash increases and becomes very serious then she should consult a doctor or a dermatologist.
- For PUPPP to be treated topical corticosteroid and oral corticosteroid as well prednisolone should be taken as per the prescription of the doctor.
- To avoid hives and itchy feeling one should wear cotton and loose clothes. Oatmeal baths are advised and lotion and moisturizers should be applied nicely on the itchy skin.
- Corticosteroids help in the treatment of papular dermatitis and cortisone is taken for the treatment of impetigo herpetiformis. These rashes vanish after the child is born but scars do not disappear but are left behind
- To cure prurigo pregnancy rash anti histamine tablets should be taken.
Pregnancy rash occur at any time of pregnancy period. Pregnancy rash are not harmful, still it is advised to seek advice from a dermatologist or a good doctor so as to diagnosis pregnancy rash and avoid additional complications.
Pregnancy Rash Pictures