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Watch Out for These Monsoon Skin Diseases

Divya started noticing an itchy rash develop in her underarms as the monsoon began. She was dealing with thyroid problems and she wondered if the rash was linked with any hormonal changes. When the rash refused to fade on its own, she consulted with a doctor who diagnosed it as ringworm. With proper medicines, her rash faded and she could wear her favourite sleeveless blouse again.

Like Divya, many of us face skin rashes in the monsoon. The fluctuating temperatures that swerve between hot and cold provide the perfect breeding ground for bacteria and many types of fungi. Here are five main skin diseases you should watch out for this rainy season.

  1. Folliculitis

Folliculitis is an infection of the hair follicles caused by bacteria or fungus. When a hair follicle gets infected, it swells up and looks like a red pimple. Sometimes folliculitis also develops pus. Folliculitis is caused by excessive sweat or moisture in an area on the body. Your arms, upper back, and thighs are the most commonly affected areas. Folliculitis can be easily treated with medicated cream and some cold sponging on affected areas.

  1. Athlete’s Foot

Athlete’s foot is a fungal infection that commonly occurs between the toes. This is not a serious skin disease but a highly contagious one. Athlete’s foot commonly spreads by walking barefoot in gym lockers, near the pool, or even in the bathroom where the floor might be covered with infected skin cells. The damp air in monsoon can worsen the risk of Athlete’s Foot. This monsoon, avoid sharing socks, towels, or wearing closed footwear to reduce your risk of this skin condition.

  1. Ringworm

Ringworm is a fungal infection of the skin that is very common in the monsoon season. The infection appears as red, circular patches on the skin. The parts of the body that are commonly affected include the arms, shoulders, chest, neck, scalp, and groin. The patches may itch or even begin to ooze. Ringworm can be easily treated and controlled with timely medication. Never try to self-medicate as this can leave you with ugly scars on your body.

  1. Scabies

Scabies is a monsoon disease called by tiny microscopic mites. These mites are invisible to the naked eye and they can live on your skin surface for months. They even burrow into your skin to lay eggs; this causes intense itching and formation of a rash. Scabies is highly contagious and can spread through infected clothing and bedding. The good news is that scabies is very treatable and can be cured through anti-biotics and medicated lotions.

  1. Eczema

Eczema is a type of skin rash which causes the skin to become inflamed. The rash is usually red and itchy and the affected areas become dry and scaly. Eczema is not caused by a bacterium but rather it is an allergic reaction of the body’s immune system to external stimulus. This skin rash is common in families which have a history of skin allergies, hay fever, or asthma. Eczema is perfectly curable with medication and skin lotions.

Easy tips to prevent skin diseases this monsoon

  1. Wear loose and comfortable clothing.
  2. Skip any tight accessories such as headbands and belts.
  3. Avoid experimenting with artificial jewellery. The metals used can irritate your skin.
  4. Don’t get any body art such as tattoos or piercings in the rains.
  5. Wear slippers or shoes at all times. Even in your bathroom.
  6. Use an anti-fungal powder on your body post-shower.
  7. Switch your perfumed body wash in favour of an anti-bacterial soap.
  8. Avoid sharing towels, socks, and inner garments.
  9. Get yourself checked for underlying medical issues such as diabetes, and thyroid problems.
  10. Wipe your body properly after a bath. Especially focus on areas where your skin folds such as between the toes, under the breasts, behind the knees, between the buttocks, and the underarms.
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