Dermatitis due to sun exposure

What is it?

Sun allergy also known as Photodermatitis is a term often used to describe conditions in which an itchy red rash occurs on skin that has been exposed to sunlight.

What are the symptoms?

Heat rash or prickly heat is a harmless but very itchy skin rash forming small red spots in places where sweat collects, such as the armpits, back, under the breasts, chest, groin, crooks of elbows and knees, and the waist.

Heat rash is caused by a blockage and inflammation of sweat ducts in heat and high humidity, which causes:

  • tiny red spots
  • an irritating itch and pricking sensation
  • redness and mild swelling of the affected area
  • abnormal appearing skin
  • skin moles
  • skin dryness
  • peeling
  • scaliness
  • roughness
  • irregular appearing scalp
  • itchy scalp

Home Remedy


  • Apply skin moisturizers. Moisturizing skin lotions can help relieve irritation caused by dry, scaly skin.
  • Use soothing skin remedies. Home remedies that may help include calamine lotion and aloe vera.


  • Avoid sun exposure. Most sun allergy symptoms improve quickly, within hours to a day or two, when the affected areas are no longer exposed to sunlight.
  • Stop using medications that make you sensitive to light. If youre taking medications for other conditions, talk with your doctor about whether they may be making your skin more sensitive to the sun.

Things to watch out for

GP can prescribe corticosteroid (steroid) cream or ointment, to be applied only when the rash appears.

Think you might have Dermatitis due to sun exposure?

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Think you have Dermatitis due to sun exposure?