If you’ve ever experienced a red, itchy underarm area, you probably know what it’s like to have an armpit sweat rash. An unpleasant experience to say the very least, armpit sweat rashes aren’t dangerous, but they’re not a good time, either.
If you sometimes experience armpit sweat rashes, you probably want to know how to treat them so they heal as quickly as possible, as well as how to prevent them from happening in the first place. Read on to learn everything you need to know about armpit sweat rashes and how to deal with them.
What Is an Armpit Sweat Rash?
Unfortunately, armpits are built in a way that makes them the perfect candidate for rashes. With thin, hairy skin that folds up on itself, the underarm has exactly the right conditions for moisture buildup and irritation, which can lead to rashes.
Typically, an armpit sweat rash will feel like itching and irritation. You may see bumps and redness on the skin. The discomfort may be slight or more intense.
Depending on the type, an armpit sweat rash can last from a few hours to a few months. Thankfully, most of them can be easily treated with home remedies or over-the-counter medications.
What Causes Armpit Sweat Rashes?
Armpit sweat rashes come in several different types, each with a different cause. The most common types of sweat-related armpit rashes are:
- Seborrheic dermatitis - This type of skin irritation is caused partly by the overproduction of skin oils. It appears as oily patches of flakes or scales that may be white or yellow in color.
- Candida - Also called candidiasis, this is a fungus or yeast infection most frequently occurring in moist areas of the skin. Symptoms of candida include swelling, itching, scaling, and redness. It can be worse if you wear tight clothing, have poor hygiene, or are in hot weather.
- Chafing - Chafing occurs when skin becomes irritated from rubbing on itself or on clothing. The underarm is especially prone to chafing. Chafing rashes are typically red, raw, stingy, or burning. When severe, they can lead to swelling, crusting, and bleeding. It’s common to get chafing when wearing ill-fitting clothing.
- Heat rash - When heat mixes with sweat on the skin, it can cause an irritated heat rash. Heat rashes look like itchy patches of tiny, prickly, red, slightly raised bumps. Heat rashes are common in the armpits because they contain a lot of sweat glands.
How to Prevent Armpit Sweat Rashes
While all of these armpit sweat rashes have different causes, the same basic steps can help with preventing all of them. These include:
- Practicing good hygiene by showering regularly
- Air-drying after a shower instead of using a towel, which can irritate the skin
- Taking care to notice if certain products like deodorants or body soaps may be irritating your skin, and stopping use of them immediately
- Wearing loose, breathable clothing so sweat doesn’t pool on the sensitive armpit skin
- Using talcum powder in the underarms during hot weather to prevent heat rash
- Trying to stay cool and dry on hot days. Staying inside near an air conditioner or a fan is ideal.
- Using underarm pads to absorb excess sweat so it doesn’t pool on the skin
Detachable underarm pads are useful for absorbing sweat, but it can be tricky to properly fasten them to your body or clothing. If you want a better solution, try out Social Citizen’s sweat-proof clothing. The hidden underarm pad is sewn directly into the shirt so it won’t budge!
Treating Armpit Sweat Rashes
Although an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, it’s just as important to know how to treat an armpit sweat rash if you do get one. The exact right treatment for armpit sweat rashes does depend on the cause. Here are the recommended treatments for each type of armpit sweat rash.
- Seborrheic dermatitis - If you think you have seborrheic dermatitis, it’s best to see a doctor. They will be able to give you an official diagnosis. If you are diagnosed with seborrheic dermatitis, it’s likely that you will be prescribed a mild corticosteroid cream or an antifungal cream.
- Candida - The correct treatment for candida is an antifungal cream. Steroid creams can actually make candida worse, so it’s a good idea to talk to a doctor who will be able to properly diagnose your armpit sweat rash and suggest the correct medication.
- Chafing - To heal chafing, gently clean the area and dry thoroughly before applying a soothing substance such as aloe vera, petroleum jelly, or coconut oil. If the area is very painful, swollen, crusted, or bleeding, a doctor may prescribe you a medicated ointment.
- Heat rash - Heat rash usually goes away without treatment. To ease the symptoms, you can take a cool shower or press a cool washcloth to the skin. Calamine lotion, antihistamine tablets, or hydrocortisone cream can also soothe the itching.
How Social Citizen Can Help You
If you’re prone to armpit sweat rashes or heavy sweating in general, there’s one product that’ll be a great help: Social Citizen’s sweat-proof Social Tee. Not only is it breathable, helping to keep your body cool and prevent heat rash, but it’s also made with a built-in underarm pad to absorb excess sweat to stop it from pooling in your underarm.
In addition to preventing armpit sweat rash, the Social Tee will keep you smelling and looking good. It comes in a fashionable cut and a variety of stylish colors, and it’s made with naturally anti-odor bamboo. Try it out today to see the difference.