Even if there is just a small amount of mold in your home, you could have an above average amount of mold spores floating around. Breathing in these spores causes a rather long list of unpleasant symptoms. One of these symptoms are extremely itchy red skin rashes that usually appear on the face, arms, torso, or legs. Here we will help identify it, reveal how it forms and what treatments are available.
- What causes mold rashes on the skin?
- What does a mold rash look like?
- The possibility of skin infection
- What are the treatment methods?
What causes mold rashes on the skin?
When breathing in mold spores, your immune system realizes it’s a potential threat and in retaliation, tries to destroy it by flooding your body with antibodies. It is this protective measure (the release of antibodies) that causes the rash and not the mold spores directly themselves. Those who are most likely to exhibit these symptoms are people with a weakened immune system and anyone who naturally has allergic reactions to mold.
In some cases, spores do not have to be breathed in to cause these symptoms. They can sometimes form by merely landing on the skin.
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What does a mold rash look like?
Mold is most prevalent during the summer when humidity is at its highest levels. What one should also keep in mind is that warm temperatures and even the sun itself can cause rashes. Not only that, but there are many other causes such as insect bites, coming into contact with certain types of plants, and even stress.
So how do you tell if you have a heat rash or too much exposure to mold?
Mold rashes will most of the time appear as small red bumpy dots and can appear just about anywhere on the body, such as the face, arms, torso, and legs. Heat rashes have a very similar appearance but will show up where sweat collects, such as on the chest, groin area, waist, back, and armpits. If exposed to mold spores, then you will more than likely be showing other symptoms in addition to the rashes.
The possibility of skin infection
As mentioned, these rashes can be extremely itchy, and the urge to scratch can be hard to resist. However, scratching can break the skin open, which leaves the possibility of skin infection. If the affected area is warm to the touch, exhibits signs of bright redness or/and has a discharge, then it’s likely to be infected. The best thing to do in this scenario is to consult your doctor for advice. Another problem is the possibility of fungal infection and swollen lymph nodes.
What are the treatment methods?
The most important thing you can do is to remove yourself from the problem environment until the mold issue is resolved. There is no need for medication either because the symptoms will disappear by itself within a day or two after you have stopped breathing in spores.
To alleviate the itching sensations do any of the following:
Wear loose-fitting cotton clothing: Loose fitting cotton clothing will help reduce itching. Avoid tight-fitting clothing and especially wool.
Anti-itch creams: The easiest and quickest way is to purchase an over the counter anti-itch cream. They work well and are cheap as well as easily accessible.
Apply ice to the rash: Place ice cubes in a bag or use a bag of frozen peas and apply it to the rash for short periods.
Apply aloe vera: Aloe vera works wonders on any rash. If you have access to the plant, break off a leaf, and extract the gel. Apply it directly onto the rash. Alternatively, you can buy an aloe vera topical cream.
Apply apple cider vinegar: Not many people know this, but apple cider vinegar has an incredibly soothing effect on the skin. Put some onto cotton and dab it onto the affected area. Another method is by adding some to a lukewarm bath and soaking in it for 5 to 10 minutes.