Rashes are common during the childhood years, and the cause of a rash can range from something as benign as getting overly hot to serious problems such as complications from strep throat. While the discovery of a rash on your child's skin is cause for concern, you may not be sure if it warrants a visit to the doctor or not. Use this guide to assess the potential seriousness of your child's rash so that you can plan the best response.
Check for a Fever
A physician should always check out a rash that is accompanied by a fever. In most cases, a mild fever should not cause a rash, so this could be a clue that your child's temperature has reached unsafe levels. Pediatric doctors can also check for underlying causes of a rash that is combined with a fever such as chickenpox or a bacterial infection that is spreading through your child's system.
Consider the Location
The areas on your child's body where the rash occurs can give clues about its origin. For instance, a rash that occurs on your child's hands and feet and in their mouth could signify that they have a case of hand-foot-and-mouth disease. Alternatively, a rash that occurs on your child's cheeks and forms a lacy pattern on the rest of the body could be Fifth disease. Make sure to let the staff know about unusual locations of the rash when you call to set up the appointment for your child's pediatric care.
Keep Track of the Time
Most mild rashes caused by benign causes such as overexertion will fade within one or two days. You should always be concerned about a rash that seems to get worse instead of better. If your child's rash lingers for more than a day or two, go ahead and take them in for an exam.
Assess Their Comfort
Anytime your child is uncomfortable, it is worth visiting the physician to have the rash examined. Rashes that are extremely itchy could cause your child to scratch too much and develop a skin infection. A pediatric doctor can recommend ways to soothe your child's rash without causing further irritation, such as using cool compresses or special medicated creams.
When a rash breaks out, it is important not to panic. Many childhood rashes simply need to run their course, but you should always be alert for signs of a rash that could signify something more serious. When in doubt, schedule an appointment to get that rash checked out so that your child benefits from you knowing how to keep them comfortable until it heals. Contact a pediatric care clinic like Port City Pediatrics for more advice.Share