What is it?

A rash is a red, bumpy, scaly, or itchy patch of skin. Rashes can be hot to touch, dry, cracked, blistered and are sometimes painful. The rash may appear in one area or around the entire body.

Rashes are common in children and babies. There are many kinds of rashes. They can be caused by:

  • Infections, including viruses
  • Health conditions
  • Allergies
  • Sunburn
  • Heat
  • Medications

Rashes that disappear when touched are called blanching rashes. These are not usually serious. Rashes that don’t disappear when pressed (non-blanching rashes) may be caused by a serious infection. Non-blanching rashes should always be seen by your GP.

Some rashes are harmless and go away on their own. Others may need treatment. It is important to find out the underlying cause of the rash so it can be treated properly.