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Understanding Sweat Rash

Hot humid places, like this beach in Ibiza, Spain, are a perfect breeding ground for sweat rash. View more men's health pictures.
Chris Jackson/Getty Images

"Never let them see you sweat" is one of those adages that is sometimes easier said than done, especially if the perspiration transforms from beads trickling down your face or neck to visibly irritated skin. Once it escalates to the latter, if it looks like a cluster of red or pink dots (also know as papules if you want to get technical), along with itching or tingling, you're likely dealing with a case of sweat rash.

This extremely common condition goes by a number of aliases -- milaria, heat rash, prickly heat -- but regardless of which term you use, they all refer to the same thing: a fungal skin infection that develops as a result of high moisture content blocking sweat ducts. It's usually localized in specific areas such as under your arms, between your legs, or near the groin. The good news is that it rarely becomes life-threatening, and dealing with it can be relatively easy if you catch it early on and are willing to make some personal adjustments in terms of immediate environment.

In this article, we'll take a look at what causes sweat rash, including triggers that can fuel the fire, as well as recommended treatments to help you beat the heat.