3 Over-the-Counter Skin Rash Treatments Worth Trying

May 7th 2016

Hydrocortisone Creams

Hydrocortisone creams are topical skin treatments that help minimize itching and inflammation. Hydrocortisone is often recommended for the skin rashes that allergies, eczema and insect bites cause. The creams also work well to treat scalp irritation and contact rashes that soaps, jewelry and certain cosmetics cause. While hydrocortisone creams are available over-the-counter, the ingredients can cause thinning of the skin and additional irritation, so it is important to consult a physician prior to use.

Calamine Lotion

Calamine lotion is an over-the-counter treatment that is often recommended for blistering, inflamed rashes caused by poison ivy and poison oak. The medication contains zinc oxide and calamine, two powerful ingredients that work together to relieve itching and dry up oozing sores. Experts also consider calamine lotion useful in preventing infections, as it contains astringent properties and hinders bacteria production. Users should apply the medication directly to the affected areas every six to eight hours. Experts recommend seeking medical advice to determine the specific underlying cause of the rash prior to application, as the medication may cause additional itching in certain individuals.

Anti-fungal Topical Medications

Fungal rashes typically develop on overly moist skin and are common in people who are either diabetic and/or obese. The rashes are deep red in color and can develop anywhere on the body, but appear most often on the buttocks and inner thighs. Application of over-the-counter antifungal medications containing miconazole often help relieve symptoms, but it is also important for sufferers to take additional precautions such as keeping the skin dry and applying barrier creams such as zinc oxide or petrolatum to the affected areas to prevent recurrence.


A skin rash is an inflammatory condition that can be triggered by many factors that include allergies, fungal infections, certain medications, viruses and plants, such as poison ivy. Symptoms of skin rashes can vary depending on the underlying cause, but often include severe itching, inflammation, raised bumps and scales. While certain underlying conditions may require medical treatment, sufferers can easily alleviate many skin rashes with simple over-the-counter remedies.

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