Playing hockey in summer can cause an unwanted nasty heat rash">

SPORTS MEDICINE: Playing hockey in summer can cause an unwanted nasty heat rash


If you are physically active in the summer hockey season, or decide to get yourself entrenched in playing indoor hockey you may experience, as a result of the hot and ma ybe humid condition the dreaded heat rash.


Heat rash isn’t fun. It always happens at the worst time. But, as it turns out, there is simply no good time at all to develop heat rash. Heat rash is a ridiculously common malady that will more than likely hit everyone at some time in their life.: Not only is heat rash incredibly uncomfortable, it’s quite ugly and embarrassing. Heat rash may also show up as inner thigh burn.

Heat rash (prickly heat or miliaria) is a mild inflammation of clogged sweat ducts. When the sweat ducts are blocked the sweat cannot come to the skin surface to evaporate and becomes trapped under the skin. The rash is characterized by small, raised bumps (like coarse sandpaper) spread evenly across small patches of skin. The rash usually goes away on it’s own and resolves in hours to a few days

Heat Rash Symptoms

  • Red, pimple-like bumps
  • Itching
  • Prickling
  • Pain
  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Warmth
  • Pus drainage
  • Red streaks
  • Swollen lymph nodes

Generally this happens at places on the body where skin meets skin such as armpits, the groin, between thighs, and under breasts. However, it’s not uncommon for heat rash to develop on the back, face, abdomen, neck, chest, and at the hairline. Blocked sweat glands are the main cause of heat rash. Sweat glands can get blocked for many reasons but the most common reasons include:

  • Skin around the neck, armpit, or groin that touches or rubs adjacent skin prevents sweat evaporation.
  • Tight clothing around the waist, abdomen, chest, or groin that prevents evaporation of sweat.
  • Bundling up in heavy clothing where sweat can accumulate on the skin.
  • Heavy creams, oily lotions, or adhesive bandages can clog sweat ducts.

Most of the time, if you treat it properly, the heat rash will go away on its own. But you want it gone now, especially if you are physically active.

Best Ways to Get Rid of a Heat Rash

Get out of the heat. The first step in getting rid of heat rash is, of course, to go someplace cool. The moment you notice heat rash developing, stop doing whatever it is you’re doing and get to somewhere with some air conditioning. Failing that, get into a shady place and sit your ass down ’til you cool down. While you’re at it, get yourself something to drink, water first then non sugary drinks containing  vitamin and mineral replenishment goodies. , or at the very least get some good ol’ fashioned water. Do not touch the heat rash. That will irritate it further.


Take a bath. If you leave all the nastiness that has built up on your skin right where it gathered, the clogged pores that are causing you problems aren’t gonna stand a chance in hell of getting better. So take a cool bath and add one of the following to the water: 1 cup of ground oatmeal or 3 tablespoons of baking soda. Whatever soap or bubble bath you use, just make sure it is not deodorizing. If, for some dumb reason, you are opposed to baths, take a cool shower. And again, use non-deodorizing soap. When it comes time to dry off, air drying is best, but if you lack the patience, then pat yourself dry. Don’t rub.


No clothing covering the heat rash if possible.  It is very important to allow as much skin-to-air contact as possible. Heat rashes love moisture. The drier you are able to keep your skin, the better. If you can sit next to (or under) a fan, do so. It is also helpful when treating heat rash to apply a cold compress. Just make sure that whatever you use is wrapped in a towel. If you notice the least bit of moisture in the towel from condensation, replace it immediately.


Wear proper attire. Whether you are trying to avoid getting heat rash to begin with or are working on a heat rash treatment for your current ailment, it is important to wear the proper clothing. Stick to natural, breathable fibers like cotton and avoid synthetic fabrics like polyester. Definitely change your clothes if you do develop heat rash, as sweaty clothing will exacerbate the problem.


 Medication. If you’re unlucky enough to have to buy something to treat heat rash with because you’ve got some intense itching going on, you’re actually in luck. All you need is a little calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream helps usually take care of the itch and, as you know, are available anywhere. You’ve probably already got some in your medicine cabinet. If the itch is really bad, don’t be shy about going to your doctor for a little something extra. Keep some in your hockey carry bag


Natural Remedies


Aloe vera. This plant needs no introduction. Chances are either you or someone you know has a live one sitting around the house somewhere. Simply break the tip off of one of the spikes, squeeze the aloe onto your hand, and gently rub it over the affected area. This natural heat rash cure will start soothing the pain almost immediately.


 Lavender or peppermint oil. The oil from both of these plants is said to have cooling properties, and both oils are frequently recommended as heat rash remedies. You can either apply the oils directly to the skin or add a few drops of either, or both, to your bath water.

Enjoy your summer hockey and be rash free.

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