Itchy and irritated skin is not only uncomfortable, it’s a hassle! There is nothing worse than being in the middle of a conversation with someone and have an unbearable itchy sensation. Scratching may provide a temporary relief but within a few seconds that annoying sensation will come back to taunt you.

So what can you do when you develop a rash and need some sort of relief?

An important first step is to understand the cause of your rash. If you have an allergy or reaction to products touching your skin, discontinuing use or contact may offer immediate relief. The type of rash you develop could be a generalized rash (all over the body) or appear only on discrete areas. Area specific rashes may be the result of new product use or contact with an irritant.

Depending on the source of the rash you may have itching, redness, tingling, burning, pain or inflammation. A rash is a general term that refers to an outbreak of bumps on the body that alter the way the skin looks or feels. There are common categories for the types of rashes people develop including:
 Scaly patches of skin not produced by infection
 Scaly patches caused by infection
 Red, itchy bumps or patches on the body

A rash should be evaluated by a health care professional to determine cause and proper treatment options. Home treatments can be an effective choice for many rashes and one of the most popular is a topical cortisone treatment. These are available over the counter or by prescription, depending on the strength needed.

Cortisone is a steroid hormone that can be administered orally, topically, intravenously, cutaneously or intraarticularly. Cortisone works to suppress the immune system (thus reducing inflammation). Cortisone, like any steroid, can be risky when used long term.

What are the side effects of cortisone?

Cortisone can lead to a permanent thinning of the skin in the areas it is used most frequently. Since cortisone suppresses the immune system it should not be used by people suffering from kidney/liver diseases, heart disease, high blood pressure, ulcers, osteoporosis or other medical conditions. Consult with your health care provider regarding any specific questions.

Benefits of Cortisone

While it may not be a long term solution, cortisone is a wonderful option for quick relief of those annoying rash symptoms! Over the counter cortisone treatments are a much lower dosage and may need to be applied more frequently to relieve symptoms.

Final Thoughts

Cortisone is one of those popular treatments that are frequently used as a “cure all” for skin conditions, especially the rash. While it may provide temporary relief, long term treatment should be under the consultation of a health care provider. Cortisone has many benefits but should be used with caution by people with any type of chronic health condition.