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Rash on Inner Thigh: Causes and Treatments

Having a rash on your inner thigh isn’t a disease. Rather, it’s a sign of something potentially happening in your body.

Depending on the cause, it may be benign or spread to other parts of the body. The rash may become itchy, red, and inflamed.

In some people, it only lasts a few hours. In others, it may be chronic. In this article, we’ll explore all the possibilities.

Inner Thigh Rashes – Common Causes

rash on inner thighArguably the most common cause of an inner thigh rash is contact. By “contact”, we mean that your thigh has touched something that’s caused it to become inflamed.

An example is contact dermatitis. This is when your skin becomes irritated after touching a certain chemical (like soap or gel).

Are you rubbing lotion on your legs daily? If so, this might be a cause of your symptom. Another possibility is thigh rubbing.

This is particularly common in people with fatty thighs and results in the thighs touching one another all day. Over time, this can lead to a rash.

Bottom Line: The most common causes of this symptom include irritants (soaps, gels, etc.) and accidental thigh rubbing.

About Contact Dermatitis

Contact dermatitis is just a fancy way of saying “rash”. It happens whenever your body “overreacts” to something that’s otherwise harmless. This includes:

  • Hair Dyes
  • Latex
  • Citrus Fruits
  • Leather
  • Shampoo
  • Lotions
  • Perfumes

Any of these things can lead to a rash on the inner thigh. Why exactly? The reason isn’t exactly known. For whatever reason, the body overreacts to these seemingly innocent items.

The inflammation response leads to redness, itching, and mild swelling. With contact dermatitis, it can be tricky to determine exactly what’s causing the rash.

Therefore, you must be extra attentive throughout the day to see what has touched your inner thigh. That way, you can avoid the trigger.

Bottom Line: Contact dermatitis can be caused by otherwise harmless items like lotions, shampoos, leather, latex, and hair dyes.

Poison Ivy

picture of poison ivyHave you recently taken a hike through a wooded area wearing shorts? If so, it’s possible that you’ve walked through poison ivy.

Poison ivy can lead to a rash on the inner thigh that lasts for several days. It typically manifests as redness, mild swelling, and itching.

Fortunately, poison ivy rarely leads to serious complications. Poison ivy rashes aren’t contagious, so there’s no need to worry about spreading to other people.

On a similar note, it might also be due to an animal bite (like a tick or horse fly bite for example).

Bottom Line: If you’ve recently gone hiking in the woods while wearing shorts, it’s possible that you walked through poison ivy.

Allergies to Certain Foods

food allergies common typesAn inner thigh rash can be due to a food allergy. You may have allergies to certain foods and not even know it- peanuts, shellfish, avocados, strawberries, etc.

Some people have allergies so severe that it can lead to death. Usually, a food allergy will result in rashes occurring everywhere on the body (not just the thigh).

So, if you’ve got a single isolated rash, it’s probably not a food allergy. If you’re uncertain, talk to your doctor about it.

Bottom Line: Certain foods- including peanuts, strawberries, and avocados- can cause mild allergic reactions (for some people, lethal).

Are You a Cyclist?

man riding bicycleDo you ride bicycle on a regular basis? If so, don’t be surprised if you develop thigh rashes. Cycling results in a lot of friction on the skin, which results in something called “Saddle Sores”.

The affected area may become red, slightly swollen, and burn. The good news is that the rash will go away once you take a break from cycling.

Saddle sores can become so painful that it can be a challenge just to walk around. If you think you’ve developed saddle sores, take a break from riding until they heal.

Bottom Line: “Saddle Sores” are inner thigh rashes that develop because of riding bicycles for extended periods of time.

Inner Thigh Rash Treatments

Here are some potential treatment options you can try:

  • Drink More Water: Many ailments related to the skin can be traced to not drinking enough water. By staying hydrated, you’ll maintain optimal skin health.
  • Anti-Allergic Drugs: If your rash is due to an allergy, then anti-allergic drugs will be required to minimize your symptoms. Avoiding the allergen itself is the best approach.
  • Steroids: Corticosteroids are drugs specifically designed to help reduce inflammation. Since there are side effects, reserve this treatment for extreme cases.

If your rash is due to an autoimmune disorder (like psoriasis), then you should get on a diet that reduces inflammation.

Specifically, you should consume more whole plant-based foods and fewer animal-based foods.

Milk, cheese, and eggs all lead to inflammation in the body. Plant-based foods like broccoli, beans, and nuts all help reduce inflammation.

Bottom Line: Potential treatments for inner thigh rashes include hydration, anti-allergic drugs, and steroids.

When Should You See a Dermatologist?

There’s no absolute answer to this. Use your own judgement: if it isn’t going away, or if it’s getting worse, go to a dermatologist.

The longer you wait to begin treatment, the worse it may get. If the rash is isolated, then it’s most likely due to it being in contact with something that’s triggering the inflammation.

In the case of contact dermatitis, be attentive about what’s touching your inner thigh. This will allow you to avoid the trigger in the future.

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