Miliaria commonly known as “Prickly heat” is a common disorder of the eccrine sweat glands that often occurs in conditions of increased heat and humidity.
Symptoms of Miliaria
Symptoms of miliaria include small and red rashes, which often itch or have a ‘pins-and-needles’ sensation. There could be a number of areas on a sufferer’s body where the prickly heat rashes may simultaneously occur. Common areas include face, neck, under the breasts and under the scrotum. Other areas include skin folds, areas of the body that may rub against clothing, such as the back, chest, and stomach, etc.
Causes of Miliaria
Prolonged exposure to perspiration can lead to plugging of the sweat ducts. This results in the duct breaking open and the escape of sweat below the skin which causes the rash known as miliaria.
Immature eccrine ducts as in neonates is one cause. These glands easily rupture when sweating is induced; this rupture leads to miliaria.
Change of climate from temperate to a tropical. The condition usually resolves after the individual has lived in the hot, humid conditions for many months.
Any stimulus to sweat may precipitate or exacerbate miliaria.
There are some drugs which cause or exacerbate miliaria e.g. Bethanechol, a drug that promotes sweating, and isotretinoin, a drug that affects follicular differentiation, are reported to cause miliaria.
Heat and humidity are factors involved in the cause of miliaria.
Other Types Of Miliaria
There are three types of miliaria is:
- Miliaria crystallina
- Miliaria rubra
- Miliaria profunda
Treatment of Miliaria
- The treating miliaria is to avoid excessive heat and humidity.
- Wearing loose cotton clothing will help prevent miliaria.
- Cool baths and air conditioning are very helpful.
- Some patients find that using a bath brush with soap to exfoliate the skin will decrease the occurrences of this condition.
- If severe case of miliaria lotion to apply to the rash.
Grapefruit: Grapefruit is one of the most effective home remedies for malaria. It should eb taken daily. It contains a natural quinine-like substance, which can be extracted from the fruit by boiling a quarter of a grapefruit and straining its pulp.
Lime and Lemon: Lime and lemon are valuable in the quartan type of malarial fever. About three grams of lime should be dissolved in about 60 ml of water and the juice of one lemon added to it. This water should be taken before the onset of the fever.
Holy Basil: The leaves of holy basil are considered beneficial in the prevention of malaria. An infusion of a few leaves can be taken daily for this purpose. The juice of about eleven grams of leaves of holy basil mixed with three grams of powder of black pepper can be taken beneficially in the cold stage of the malarial fever. This will check the severity of the disease.
Cinnamon: Cinnamon is regarded as a valuable remedy in malaria. One teaspoon should be coarsely powdered and boiled in a glass of water with a pinch of pepper powder and honey. This can be used beneficially as a medicine in malaria.
Prickly heat can be prevented by avoiding activities that induce sweating, using air conditioning to cool the environment, wearing light clothing and in general, avoiding hot and humid weather. If that is not possible, and especially if air conditioning is either unavailable or unaffordable, then taking multiple showers throughout the day (and night as well if needed) to unplug and clean the sweat glands is the best defence against it.