Skin rashes are often itchy and uncomfortable, but if you know what causes them and how they can be treated, you can experience significant relief. At Central Wyoming Skin Clinic in Casper, Laramie, and Gillette, WY our dermatology professionals are committed to helping their patients determine the source of their rash and treat it effectively. Below, you'll learn some common causes of rashes and how they can be treated.
Allergies are an overreaction of the body's immune system, and a rash is a common way that the skin responds in these situations. Most people have a skin reaction to poison ivy or other noxious plants, although some may be more severe than others if they are particularly sensitive. Allergies to certain metals or fabrics, such as nickel and wool, may produce a rash when the allergen comes into contact with the skin. Medication, animal dander, and food allergies can also produce a rash. Once you and your Casper dermatologist determine your allergic triggers, avoiding them is often enough to keep the rash at bay. Topical creams can also help lessen the intensity of itching.
Psoriasis, a condition in which the skin's cells reproduce too quickly, causes a unique, flaky rash to develop on the elbows, scalp and knees. Steroid, light and vitamin therapy can be very helpful in treating psoriasis. Infections such as impetigo or ringworm can also cause intensely itchy rashes to crop up. Your Casper dermatologist can prescribe topical and oral medications help to clear up rashes that have an infectious cause.
Your skin and your health are unique. At Central Wyoming Skin Clinic, we pride ourselves on giving each patient personalized treatment based on their particular needs. If you've been experiencing ongoing rashes and aren't sure why, contact our office in in Casper, Laramie, and Gillette, WY and ask to schedule an appointment with one of our providers today!
New studies shed light on how best to avoid mosquitos and their nasty bites.
Summer in Wyoming is here and so are the mosquitos. They are at the lake, in backyards in town and just about everywhere in the county. And they can spread serious diseases such as the West Nile Virus, Equine Encephalitis, bird flu virus which are in Wyoming and Zika virus, yellow fever virus, and malaria. There are avoidance methods which help to decrease attacks without chemicals. Mosquitos find you by body scent, heat, CO2 and appearance. Mosquito repellents don’t really repel but confuses the mosquito’s tracking of targets. They are attracted to larger dark objects so wearing light clothing helps. They are rarely encountered during the day in direct sunlight. They hang out in shadowy areas in forests and other shaded areas, so avoid these areas. They usually are most active between dusk and dawn so avoid going out without some protection during this time.
The easiest protection is wearing loosely fitting long sleeved shirts and long pants. There are sprays that are specifically for clothing and kill mosquitos when they land on treated areas. They contain permethrin which remains in the clothing for several washings
DEET has been the standard chemical repellant for years but it has drawbacks. Recent studies suggest the only effective concentration is 100%(repels 66% of mosquitos). In this concentration there are worries about absorption through the skin and nerve/brain toxicity, especially in children.
Recent studies suggest there are safer and more effective methods of repelling mosquitos.
One is a clip-on by OFF! Which contains metofluthrin and works the best at repelling mosquitos(repels 73% of mosquitos).
The second-best repellent is lemon eucalyptus oil(repels 70% of mosquitos). There are several brands including Repel, and Cutter. It is very safe to use, doesn’t have the toxicity of DEET and it is more effective.
Other much less effective sprays include Skin-so-soft( repels 21%), Cutter advanced spray and other sprays containing picaridin, any DEET spray less than 100% concentration(repels 31% on average), and other herbal sprays(repels 40%).
With the winter weather, sometimes our skin gets dry and itchy. Here are some tips to to help in the matter...
1. Apply a cold, wet cloth or ice pack to the skin that itches. Do this for about five to 10 minutes or until the itch subsides.
2. Take an oatmeal bath. This can be very soothing, especially for blisters or oozing skin due to chickenpox, hives, poison ivy or sunburn.
3. Moisturize your skin. Always choose a moisturizer free of additives, fragrances and perfumes. Small amounts of mineral oil on wet skin works well and is cheap.
4. Apply topical anesthetics that contain pramoxine.
5. Apply cooling agents, such as menthol or calamine. You could also place your moisturizer in the refrigerator to help achieve this cooling effect.
6. Bathe with lukewarm – not hot – water. Try to limit your bath or shower to just 10 minutes. Hot water removes natural skin oils and causes dry skin which itches more
7. Always use “fragrance-free” soaps and detergents to minimize irritation. Be wary of products labeled “unscented,” as they might still have chemicals that can irritate your skin.
8. As directed by your dermatologist, apply medications before moisturizing. Then, apply your moisturizer to all areas of your skin, including areas treated with medication.
9. Wear loose-fitting, cotton clothes. Wool and other rough-feeling fabrics can irritate your skin, causing intense itching.
10. Avoid extreme temperature changes. Maintain a relatively cool, neutral humidity environment in your house. Use a humidifier during winter if you are prone to dry skin and eczema.
11. Reduce stress, as stress can make your itch worse.
Dermatologists, using the latest technology known as Telemedicine, have determined that interactive consultations can improve clinical outcomes for patients because they usually involve beneficial changes in medical diagnosis and disease management that otherwise might not occur. Telemedicine for dermatology patients is a great tool because skin conditions can be readily examined in digital still images. The differences in diagnosis, disease management and clinical outcomes, found that patient care was usually enhanced by specialty consultations via telemedicine. It enables us to bridge the big care gap for those people who don't have easy or convenient access to a dermatologist. Telemedicine is experiencing increased use in geographically distant regions and other medically underserved communities. Telemedicine in dermatology includes image files that are saved and forwarded to a dermatologist for review (known as "store-and-forward") at any time. These interactive sessions have the advantage of allowing instant clarification about a patient's health history as well as allowing a specialist to immediately capture additional digital images if more clinical information is needed. This interactive technology is nearly equivalent to physically being in the room with a patient. It enables dermatologists to see the skin problems, and have real-time discussions with patients and their providers as if we were in the room together and if an appointment is needed they can schedule at that time. Studies confirm that this is an effective tool to improve patient outcomes. A retrospective analysis of medical records was conducted for 1,500 patients who were evaluated using live interactive teledermatology. Patients with two or more teledermatology visits within a one-year period were assessed for changes in clinical outcomes. Compared with diagnoses and treatment plans from the referring physician alone, the 1,500 teledermatology consultations resulted in diagnostic changes for nearly 70 percent of patients. Those changes in diagnoses included identifying benign lesions where malignant ones had been diagnosed by a primary-care provider, and diagnosing a malignancy for diseases such as basal cell carcinoma after an initial, primary-care diagnosis of benign cell growth. The consultations also resulted in nearly every single patient (97.7 percent) receiving recommendations via teledermatology to change the way patients managed their skin diseases. Those changes included dermatologist recommendations to begin or end a medication, to modify the dosage or delivery of a medication, and to undergo additional laboratory tests or cultures. It was determined that the live consultations likely resulted in improved diagnostic accuracy and more effective treatment plans. Patients receiving a changed diagnosis had better chances of clinical improvements compared to patients whose diagnoses remained unchanged. Each additional teledermatology follow-up visit was associated with better odds of improved clinical outcomes. With rapid improvements in interactive mobile platforms, connectivity speed and visual clarity, telehealth services like dermatology will play a bigger and bigger role in improving the quality of care and the access to specialty services that people deserve no matter where they live.
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