Are you worried about the sudden appearance of red spots on your skin? Such spots can be a sign of infection or an internal medical condition.
“Accurate diagnosis of sudden red spots is necessary for following a correct line of treatment,” says Dr. Zeel Gandhi, Chief Ayurvedic Doctor at Vedix.
Ayurveda suggests including certain powerful anti-inflammatory, blood purifying and depigmenting herbs in your skin care to reduce the red spots and prevent their reappearance.
Scroll down to know the various conditions that cause red spots on the body and their best natural treatments.
What Do Red Spots On Skin Mean?
According to Ayurveda, a change in your skin’s appearance is often a sign of a disease. ‘Rakta Mandalas’ or red spots on the skin are likely to appear if there is an imbalance in your Doshas (bodily humours) along with a vitiation of the Rakta Dhatu (blood tissue).
Red spots on the skin may indicate a variety of skin conditions or can be symptoms of an internal disease. Their appearance can cause irritation, itching and inflammation on your skin. In order to treat red spots on your body, it is vital to diagnose their real cause.
A. Itchy Red Spots On Skin
Allergic reactions or infections that cause red spots on the body, often tend to be pruritic or itchy in nature. Skin rashes can also cause itchy red spots on the skin. If you notice an increase in the number or size of these red spots or experience symptoms like severe skin irritation, fever, breathlessness, inflammation, it is advisable to seek immediate medical help.
B. Non-Itchy Red Spots On Skin
Non-itchy red spots on the skin are often harmless. They can be birthmarks, acne or even a red mole also known as cherry angiomas. Pinpoint red dots on the skin caused by a condition called petechiae are also non-itchy in nature. However, if you suddenly develop a non-itchy red spot on the skin, it is better to get it checked by a dermatologist.
Many women experience acne-like rashes during their later stages of pregnancy due to hormonal fluctuations. Such pregnancy rashes often have the appearance of red marks or spots on the skin.
What Are The Symptoms of Red Spots On Skin?
Symptoms of red spots on the skin may vary depending on the condition causing it. A few of the general symptoms are listed below:
- Pain and heat in the affected area
- Burning sensations and skin sensitivity
- Dry, scaly skin
- Raised lumps
- Pus formation
- Red blisters that weep fluid
What Are The Causes of Red Spots On Skin?
1. Allergic Reactions
Your skin’s defence mechanism is designed to protect your body from harmful elements. People with sensitive skin or an overactive immune system may experience an allergic reaction when their skin comes in contact with an allergen (detergents, dyes, cosmetics, pollen). The body perceives the skin irritant as a threat, thus launching an immune attack causing inflammation and itchy red spots on the skin. Certain foods and drugs may also cause allergic reactions.
Some common types of allergic conditions that cause red spots on the skin are:
- Contact Dermatitis
- Diaper Rash
2. Insect Bites And Skin Infestations
The sting, saliva or toxins present in an insect bite can trigger an immune reaction causing itchy red spots on your skin along with inflammation. Depending on the severity of the bite, the symptoms are likely to disappear within a few days.
Parasitic infestations (nits, mites) on your skin can also cause a rash like tiny red spots to appear on your body. In the case of Scabies , small red spots develop on the skin where the mites burrow and lay eggs. The condition is extremely pruritic and spreads easily.
3. Viral/Bacterial/Fungal Infections
There are several viral, bacterial and fungal infections that cause tiny red spots to develop on your skin as part of their symptoms. They may be accompanied by other symptoms such as fever, inflammation, pain and skin irritation. Some commonly known infections that cause red spots on the body are listed below:
- Chicken Pox
- Fifth Disease
- Hand- Foot- Mouth Disease
- Scarlet Fever
4. Chronic Skin Diseases
Several chronic skin diseases have a genetic influence and are also triggered by external factors such as heat, sun exposure, dry skin, skin irritants and others. Their flare-ups are often characterised by edema, erythema, dryness, scaly patches and bumps or small red spots on the skin.
A list of chronic skin diseases that can cause red spots on the skin are mentioned below:
5. Heat Rash
Heat rash, prickly heat or miliaria occurs when your sweat ducts are blocked and sweat leaks into your skin. It’s a common skin condition that affects people of all ages in hot, humid climates. Depending on the severity of the condition, miliaria is divided into 3 subtypes. Amongst which, miliaria rubra and miliaria profunda are likely to cause small lumps or small red spots on the body. In both conditions the blockage is in the deeper layers of your skin, making them more difficult to treat.
These are non-itchy red spots on the skin caused by subcutaneous bleeding of capillaries. Infections and side effects from medicines are two commonly known causes of petechiae. They have the appearance of pinpoint red dots on the skin.
7. Keratosis Pilaris
You might have noticed red dots on your hands and legs after a shaving or waxing treatment. These little acne-like lumps occur due to a skin condition known as keratosis pilaris. It happens when dead skin or keratin flakes block your hair follicles. Keratosis pilaris is often a genetic skin condition that might get aggravated by friction, sun exposure, dry weather and hormonal fluctuations in your body.
8. Cherry Angiomas
Also known as Campbell de Morgan spots, cherry angiomas  are little skin growths that cause tiny red spots on the body. They are formed when blood vessels under your skin gather together to form a little red lump. Usually benign, they may appear anywhere on your body. These growths are more common as you age, but people with a family history of cherry angiomas may experience them before the age of 30.
A common woe for people with oily and combination skin, acne lesions are formed when excess sebum, dead cells and dirt block your skin pores. Such clogs in your hair follicles lead to comedonal acne (whiteheads, blackheads). The same lesions, when infected with Propionibacterium acnes bacteria, can grow bigger to form inflamed acne (papules, pustules, nodules). Acne can have the appearance of non-itchy red spots on your face and other body parts.
A hair follicle infected with bacteria may turn into a boil causing red spots on the body. They are pus-filled little lumps that are usually painful. Boils are common in areas that are more exposed to friction such as your inner thighs and buttocks.
Dermatofibroma is nodules formed under the skin having the appearance of red dots on the body. Though harmless, dermatofibroma can sometimes be itchy and painful. They often develop on the lower legs or in other extremities of your body and are more common in women than in men.
12. Anemia Rash
People diagnosed with anaemia often experience a rash-like symptom that causes pinpoint red dots on the skin. Especially in aplastic anaemia where the platelet count also drops along with the number of RBCs, there is a chance of cutaneous bleeding. Due to this, areas such as shin experience anaemia rash.
How To Get Rid Of Red Spots On Skin Naturally?
A. Home Remedies
1. Homemade Packs
A. Herbal Cold Compress
For itchy red spots on the skin, cold compresses work like magic. They also help reduce inflammation, heat and redness in the affected areas by constricting the subcutaneous blood flow to the area.
How To Use
1. Keep a wet towel in the fridge for 10 to 15 minutes and apply on the red spots on your skin.
2. You can also wrap some ice cubes in a plastic bag and apply them to the affected area.
B. Baking Soda
Baking soda is an oft used treatment for reducing both red spots on the skin that are non-itchy and those that are caused by allergic reactions. Owing to its antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and skin brightening properties, baking soda is effective against various skin disorders that cause red dots to appear on your body.
How To Use
1. Mix a small amount of baking soda with lukewarm water and apply to the red spots.
2. Wash off after 10 to 15 minutes.
3. Discontinue use if you experience skin sensitivity.
C. Marigold And Honey
Marigold extracts have amazing skin healing abilities. It can lighten red spots on the body, treat skin allergies, minor bacterial and fungal infections and soothe dry, irritated skin. Adding honey further increases the pack's moisturizing and antimicrobial properties.
How To Use
1. Make a paste with marigold petals and leaves.
2. Add honey to it and apply to the affected areas.
3. Wash off after 30 minutes.
D. Red Onion, Olives And Olive Oil
Red onion is a potent inflammation treatment due to the high concentration of quercetin,n, especially in its outer rings. Extracts from red onions are used in various skin care products to treat acne and skin pigmentations. Both olives and olive oil are rich in quercetin and various antioxidants that help reduce red spots on the skin.
How To Use
1. Make a paste with red onions and olives and add olive oil to it.
2. Apply this on the affected areas and wash off after 30 minutes.
E. Pineapple And Berries
Rich sources of the anti-inflammatory compounds bromelain and quercetin , a pack made from pineapple and berries can quickly reduce red spots on the body caused by inflammatory skin conditions. They also help prevent pigmentation once the spots are cured.
How To Use
1. Blend a ripe pineapple along with its stem.
2. Add berries of your choice to this paste and apply to the affected areas to clear the red spots on your skin.
2. Essential Oils
Massage the affected area with the below mentioned essential oils to reduce skin inflammation, red dots on the body and soothe irritated skin. However, it is advisable to check with your doctor before applying any of the essential oils if the cause of the red spots on your skin are unknown.
A. Tea Tree Oil
Terpenes and other natural compounds in tea tree oil give it its antifungal, anti-inflammatory and depigmenting properties. It is highly effective in treating red spots on the skin caused by infections and acne.
B. Eucalyptus Oil
Eucalyptus oil is considered beneficial for treating itchy red spots on the skin. It soothes the affected area, reduces inflammation and pain.
C. Turmeric Oil
Turmeric oil is effective against various skin diseases that cause itchy and non-itchy red spots on the body. It helps pacify all three Doshas.
D. Ginger Oil
Known for its anti-inflammatory properties, ginger oil can be used to treat symptoms like swelling and tenderness that generally accompany itchy red spots on the skin.
E. Sandalwood Oil
Sandalwood oil’s amazing cooling effects reduce itchiness, skin sensitivity and lighten red spots on the body with regular use.
B. Ayurvedic Treatments
Ayurvedic treatment for Kushtha Rogas causing Rakta Mandalas or red spots on the skin include various ancient herbs that have anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and blood purifying properties. Lepas or herbal packs made from these herbs go deep within your skin to balance your aggravated Doshas, detoxify your skin and lighten the appearance of these spots.
1. Anti-Inflammatory Herbs
Make a paste with raw turmeric and coconut oil and apply on the red dots on your body. Curcumin  in turmeric helps reduce the spots and prevent skin inflammation. Both turmeric and coconut oil have antimicrobial properties that keep skin infection at bay.
Apply a paste of fresh ginger and honey on itchy red spots on the skin or red spots caused by an allergic reaction. Ginger’s anti-inflammatory nature calms your skin and treats the allergic reaction. Honey is hydrating and antimicrobial, which keeps the area moisturized and prevents skin irritations and infections.
Sariva powder can be mixed with ghee or coconut oil and applied regularly on the red spots. It is an ancient kushtha (skin disease) curing herb known for being a potent treatment for skin allergies, red spots on the body, skin inflammation and chronic skin disorders. Sariva is also effective against red spots caused by acne.
Guggulu can be applied with honey on the affected areas. Guggulu is an age-old treatment for eczema, psoriasis and other chronic skin conditions. It effectively reduces itchy red spots on the skin caused by rashes, insect bites and infections.
Mix Shatavari powder with coconut oil or ghee and apply on the red spots on your body. Shatavari pacifies the Pitta Dosha and is thus effective against skin problems caused by Pitta aggravations.
2. Anti-Microbial Herbs For Skin Infections
A. Tulsi And Neem
Both tulsi and neem are used in various Ayurvedic treatments for their powerful antimicrobial properties. These herbs are highly hydrating and can treat red spots on the skin caused by skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis, rosacea and infections. Freshly extracted leaves of neem and tulsi can be pounded and applied on the affected areas.
3. Blood Purifying Herbs For Skin Diseases
When it comes to detoxifying your body, Manjistha does it best. Manjistha can be consumed or applied on the affected areas. Consumption dosage may vary depending on your Prakriti and the severity of your condition. Regular usage of manjistha can remove harmful toxins and pacify Rakta Dhatu vitiations, thus curing itching and red spots on the skin.
Guduchi is widely used to treat skin diseases that are caused due to the presence of impurities and toxins in the blood. Its ‘Raktashodhaka’ abilities help clean your blood and heal red spots on the skin caused by insect bites, allergies and infections.
4. Depigmenting Herbs
The natural depigmenting compound aloin in kumari helps reduce red spots on the skin. Apply freshly extracted aloe vera gel on the affected area twice daily. You can also leave it on overnight.
Licorice or yashtimadhu’s skin brightening properties are well known. Mix yashtimadhu powder with ghee or almond oil and apply on the affected areas.
Rich in Vitamin C, triphala helps fight skin infections and allergies that cause red spots on the skin. It improves your overall skin immunity and naturally lightens the red spots on the body. Apply a paste made o triphala powder and coconut oil/ honey or ghee to heal the condition.
D. Rakta Chandanam
Santalin in red sandalwood powder (Rakta Chandanam) is an amazing skin brightening agent. Applying a lepa made with rakta chandanam and milk can remove red spots on the skin within a few days. Its natural cooling and Pitta pacifying properties are highly effective against itchy red spots on the skin.
Due to its depigmenting, skin brightening and antimicrobial properties, kumkuma or saffron is used to treat various skin diseases that cause red dotted spots on the skin. Soak kumkuma in milk for an hour and apply on the affected skin areas.
Visit your Ayurvedic doctor for a complete diagnosis of your Doshas to determine the real cause behind the appearance of the red spots on your skin. Knowing your Prakriti or body constitution will allow for better treatment of the condition.
C. Other Medications
1. Antihistamine Drugs
Histamine is a protein responsible for skin inflammations. Thus for treating skin rashes, allergies, insect bites and chronic skin disorders that lead to inflammation and red spots on the body, antihistamine  drugs are prescribed. These are usually available over the counter in medical stores.
2. Calamine Lotions
For minor skin rashes causing itchy red spots on the body, calamine lotions are effective topical treatments. They are also good for treating heat rashes and insect bites. For more severe skin conditions, calamine lotions may be prescribed in combination with antihistamine topical or oral medicines.
D. Foods To Eat And Avoid
1. Include fruits, vegetables and edible oils that have anti-inflammatory compounds like quercetin, bromelain, phenolic acids and others. These include red onions, pineapple, berries, olives, tomatoes, capers, apples, grapes.
2. Have foods that are rich in Vitamin C. Green leafy vegetables, amla, citrus fruits, papaya, kiwi, broccoli, guava, plums.
3. Include foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids such as salmon, tuna, mackerel, eggs.
4. Substitute your coffee with green tea to help your body flush out harmful toxins.
5. Prepare your meals with anti-inflammatory, immunity boosting spices such as black jeera (nigella seeds), cumin, fennel seeds, fenugreek, cinnamon, cardamom, clove, pepper, turmeric, ginger, garlic, coriander.
6. Reduce sugary, oily and processed foods that interfere with your body's healing process. They can also cause hormone fluctuations which may be responsible for causing red spots on your skin.
Vedix Tip: Consume a balanced diet that includes all 6 tastes to keep your Doshas in equilibrium.
How Long Does It Take For Red Spots To Go Away?
How long your red spots may last is completely dependent on what is causing them to develop on your body. Minor skin rashes, prickly heat and insect bites causing red spots on your skin may easily fade within a week or two as the condition heals. However, inflamed acne lesions or chronic skin diseases causing red spots on the face and other parts may take longer and can also reappear if left untreated.
How To Prevent Red Spots On Skin?
1. Switch to a herbal skincare routine that is devoid of harmful chemicals. This will not only enhance your skin's condition but also help prevent the appearance of red spots on your body.
2. Avoid frequently touching the red spots on your skin. This may increase the chances of infection. Apply a skin soothing lotion for itchy red spots.
3. Colloidal oatmeal or green tea baths are very effective in keeping various skin rashes and infections at bay.
4. Gently exfoliating non itchy red marks on the face and other parts may help to remove them. Exfoliation helps increase the cell turnover rate of your skin. This allows for healthy new cells to come to the surface.
5. Protect the affected area from direct sun exposure. Wear protective clothing and use sunscreen every time you step out.
6. Moisturize the affected areas on your skin. Moisturizers form a protective layer and prevent dehydration and also assist the healing process. Coconut oil and aloe vera are amazing natural moisturizers that can be safely used on the red spots on your skin.
7. Stay away from comedogenic skincare products or those that contain harsh surfactants.
8. Wear breathable clothing that allows your sweat to dry easily.
9. Stay hydrated. Consume an Ayurvedic diet for healthy skin.
10. Exercise regularly, meditate or practise yoga to keep your stress levels low.
When Should You See A Doctor?
It is good to be vigilant about the red spots developing on your skin. For red spots on your skin that don’t itch, see a doctor if there is a gradual change in its size, number or colour. For itchy red spots, if the home remedies and Ayurvedic treatments mentioned in this article don't bring relief or heal the condition, seek medical advice.
The Last Word
Not all red spots on the skin are a cause for worry. If their appearance causes you discomfort, treating them with natural Ayurvedic remedies is always a safe choice. Taking OTC drugs without a proper diagnosis can trigger serious side effects including a drug allergy. Following simple preventive measures such as keeping the affected area clean, consuming a Dosha balancing Ayurvedic diet and following a herbal skincare routine can go a long way in maintaining good skin health.Know Your Dosha Now
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