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Rashes In The Pine Belt – When to See A Dermatologist

   If you have seen one type of rash, well, you’ve seen just that – one type of rash. Rashes originate from a variety of sources, mimic different conditions, and vary in severity. And here in the Hattiesburg and Laurel, Mississippi areas there are a plethora of things that could cause a rash to appear. To the untrained eye, all rashes may look alike and seem easily treatable. After all, there are a number of over the counter remedies that can help someone deal with inflammation caused by a rash, such as steroid creams or oral antihistamines. However, any doctor will tell you that it is not always so simple. That is because rashes can be tricky even to a board certified doctor that sees them every day. Rashes have many faces. They can appear as blisters, welts, or blotches of discoloration; they can burn, become scaly, dry, itchy, or red in color; and they can occur all over the body, or they may be isolated to one area. Rashes can also disappear within a few minutes or hours, or linger on for days. They may even disappear and reappear, or never seem to go away. As mentioned above, there are plenty of rashes that can be handled with over the counter medication, but at what point should you seek out a dermatologist for a rash? That is what we will discuss in this blog.


   At Pine Belt Dermatology, we love rashes. Why? Because they are perplexing and can be exciting to treat. They can come in many forms. Bug bites, medication allergy, autoimmune diseases, STDs, diaper rashes, plant allergies, secondary infections, or food allergies could all cause rashes. Most rashes are not life-threatening, however, depending on what is causing the rash, some rashes may be indicators of a very serious condition. Below I have highlighted signs that would indicate you need to either seek help from a dermatologist or visit your local urgent care center. These are also symptoms that the American Academy of Dermatology recognize as signals it is time to get help with the rash.


  1. You have a fever accompanied by a rash: This sort of rash could be caused by an allergic reaction or some sort of infection.
  2. The rash begins to blister: If you have a rash that is made up of blisters, or the rash has developed further into open sores, this could also be an allergic reaction to the external environment, an allergic reaction to medication, or could be caused by a condition internally.
  3. The rash is all over the body: A rash that is all over the body could indicate an allergic reaction or infection caused by something serious.
  4. The rash appeared suddenly and is spreading rapidly to other areas: This too could be the result of an allergic reaction. Allergies are common, especially here in southern Mississippi, and they can be caused by a number of things. Rashes that spread should be a clear indicator to schedule an appointment with one of Pine Belt Dermatology’s providers.
  5. The rash burns or is extremely painful: rashes that are painful should most certainly be examined by a Pine Belt Dermatology provider.
  6. Rash appears on the genitals: Any rash that appears in the groin area, or directly on reproductive organs, should certainly be examined as soon as possible as they could have severe consequences if left untreated.
  7. The rash, and surrounding areas, becomes infected: a rash that is extremely itchy to the point that you scratch it could become infected, which will result in further irritation and inflammation. How do you know a rash is infected? Signs of infection in a rash would be if the rash had yellow or green fluid, swelling, crusting, pain and warmth around the rash, or a red streak coming from the rash. Infected rashes need to be managed by a board certified dermatologist, so if you suspect yours may be infected, schedule an appointment with us today.

   As mentioned above, some rashes can be treated over the counter. But if you or a loved one exhibits any of the above symptoms, come see one of our dermatology experts today. While some rashes may not be serious, others could be indicators of something far more serious, in which case we want to confront head on. Even rashes that are not life threatening can be extremely frustrating to deal with, so if you would like to find the best possible relief from your rash, come see us. We’re located in Hattiesburg, Petal, Collins, Columbia, and Ellisville, Mississippi so we are very accessible. If you have a rash that appears after clinical hours, you can still get a diagnosis, and medication, through our Online Dermatology Visit service. This can be accessed through the web or through any Android or Apple device! To be taken to the Online Dermatology portal Click Here

Kristen Richardson, PA-C Pine Belt Dermatology Physician Assistant

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