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When to See a Doctor About Your Rash

Woman Scratching Rash on Shoulder

Rashes are not a summer specific health issue, but there are several reason why you may experience a summer rash that you may not deal with any other season. Playing and working outside during the summer can bring us into contact with more rash-causing sources than any other time of year.

So what should you do when your summer rash just won’t go away or causes you unnecessary discomfort? When should you see a doctor about your rash and when does a rash require emergency medical treatment?

NMC Health can get you the answers and relief you need to get back out this summer. Our expert providers at our Family Medicine clinics in Wichita, Park City, Valley Center, and Hesston are experienced in getting to the source of your concern, answering your questions, and getting you the relief you need.

Appointments at family medicine clinics can take a little longer, so it’s recommended that you visit an Immediate Care clinic if you need to be seen within 48 hours. NMC Health | Immediate Care in Newton is open 7 days a week to help you receive care any day of the week. Walk-ins are welcome and you can even check-in online to see wait times and get in line before you come in. We have the tools and knowledge to help patients 6 months and older and with a wide range of health needs, so you know you’re in the best hands when you are in our care.

For the most extreme cases, a trip to the Emergency Room may be necessary to help you recover from your severe health need. The Emergency Department at NMC Health Medical Center is ready to serve Newton and the surrounding communities to get you the emergency care you need and get you back on your feet.

Now that you know where to go when your fun in the sun makes you want to hide inside, here’s what to do and where to go when you suspect your problem rash may need a doctor’s help to go away.

What Is a Rash and Why Can They Be a Problem?

Developing a rash can put a damper on anyone’s day, but when your rash just won’t go away, it can ruin the whole summer!

Rashes are a skin condition where an area of the skin changes color or texture and may look inflamed or irritated. The rash may be red, warm, scaly, bumpy, dry, itchy, swollen, or painful. Rashes have many causes, but commonly occur as a result of¹:

  • Allergies
  • Heat
  • Chafing
  • Infections
  • Medication Side Effects
  • Genetics

Most rashes go away on their own, but sometimes there is an underlying factor that causes them to linger or vanish for awhile only to pop back up again.

When to See a Family Medicine or Immediate Care Clinic About Your Rash

There are certain rash characteristics to be on the lookout for that may mean you need the help of a professional to get to the bottom of how to treat your rash so it goes (and stays) away. Here are 5 of symptoms that could mean you need to see a doctor to get rid of your rash.

Severe Rashes

Rashes that develop blisters, open wounds, crust over and ooze pus may require professional help to get rid of. A severe rash that causes you a lot of pain, itchiness and discomfort, even with the use of over-the-counter treatment options, is something a family medicine doctor or immediate care provider can help diagnose so you get the most effective treatment to heal your rash as quickly as possible.

Fast-Spreading Rashes

A fast-spreading rash is a sign that your rash may be working its way through your body. To rule out a trip to the emergency room, it’s important to be seen immediately by a medical professional.

Long-Lasting Rashes

That irritating rash just won’t go away! No matter what lotion, ointment, salve, or over-the-counter medication you throw at it, your rash just isn’t responding, leaving you baffled (and itchy.) Getting answers is just as important as getting relief, and we can help with both!

Recurring Rashes

So you’re able to get rid of your rash, but like a bad picture from middle school, it keeps popping back up (usually at the least convenient times). Returning rashes could indicate an underlying condition that you may not realize you have (Did you know you can be allergic to your lawn? Seriously!) Our expert providers have the tools and knowledge to get to the source of your skin condition to get you answers and relief.

Oddly-Shaped Rashes

Oddly shaped rashes could indicate an infection that may require a provider to get rid of. Ringworm is one example of an easily identifiable rash that you’ll need medical assistance to treat.

When to Visit an Emergency Room for Your Rash

While only the most severe rashes warrant a trip to the emergency room, there are some extreme cases that can require emergency medical care. If you have a rash that is spreading across your whole body, you may need to go to the ER. Rapidly spreading rashes can be indicative of a severe allergic reaction that requires immediate medical attention.

Another condition you may notice on your skin that could require emergency medical assistance is red streaks, particularly following your veins. If you notice red streaks increasing in size or spreading along your body, you may have a serious infection that needs to be seen right away. Infections can begin from any wound, including burns, rashes, bites and stings, so stay vigilant.

Get Answers. Get Relief. Get Back Out There!

We spent a lot of time going through the signs to watch out for so you’re aware of when your common summer ailment is turning into a bigger health concern. We’ve also discussed when it’s appropriate to seek out treatment from a family medicine or immediate care clinic and when your health concern is serious enough for a trip to the ER.

Whether your problem rash just won’t go away or you’re suffering from severe discomfort, NMC Health Family Medicine, Immediate Care, and the Emergency Department at NMC Health Medical Center have you covered no matter your concern or level of care needed.

If you or someone you know are having a medical emergency, call 911. You can get directions and learn more about the Emergency Department at NMC Health | Medical Center here.

Need relief fast, but your rash doesn’t fit the bill for a trip to the ER? Get relief without the wait at NMC Health | Immediate Care in Newton! Click the button below to view current wait times and get in line so you can get seen by a medical provider faster and easier than ever.

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