We all know that rashes are certainly uncomfortable to experience, but is there a chance that whatever rash you’re dealing with can be spread to other people?

It’s possible, and our AFC Urgent Care Monroe Road team further explains below.

Are Skin Rashes Contagious?

Some skin rashes are contagious, but not all of them are. Also, this question is kind of a tricky one because the definition of contagious depends on whether the rash itself can be spread or the infection that causes the rash can be spread.

For example, in some cases, a rash is contagious in that someone can get a rash from another person with the specific rash. In other cases, a person with a rash may be at risk of spreading the infection that caused the rash, which may not always cause a rash in the person who gets infected. We’ve listed some rashes that are considered contagious below.

Contagious Rashes

  • Impetigo
  • Shingles
  • Ringworm
  • Scabies
  • Chickenpox
  • Measles and rubella
  • Pityriasis rosea
  • Cellulitis and erysipelas
  • Lymphangitis
  • Folliculitis

How Will I Know If I Have a Contagious Rash?

Rashes in and of themselves are certainly not uncommon. We all get them from time to time, so how are we supposed to know to stay away from others?

Some of the “contagious” rashes have fairly typical presentations. For example, shingles has a reddish rash, usually with blisters, and develops on one side of the body near the waist; however, this isn’t always the case for every contagious rash. A good rule of thumb that will help you avoid spreading your infection or rash is to consider your rash contagious until proven otherwise. So, visit our AFC center ASAP to get the correct rash diagnosis!

When to See a Doctor

  • The rash is all over the body. A rash that covers the body could indicate something problematic, such as an infection or allergic reaction.
  • The rash is accompanied by a fever. This also could be caused by an allergic reaction or an infection. Examples of rashes caused by infection include scarlet fever, measles, mononucleosis and shingles.
  • The rash is sudden and spreads rapidly. A common cause of this is an allergy to a medication. If breathing becomes difficult, go to the emergency room or call 911.
  • The rash is painful.
  • The rash is infected. If you have an itchy rash and you scratch it, it may become infected. Signs of an infected rash are yellow or green fluid; swelling, crusting, pain, warmth in the rash area; or a red streak coming from the rash.

Rashes happen, and they’re especially common at local sports and summer camps. If you or your child has a rash and needs medical attention, don’t hesitate to visit our AFC Urgent Care Monroe Road center today!