My child has a rash

kids rash

Parents worry when they notice a rash or a bump on their children’s skin. In most cases these skin conditions are caused by viral infections and shouldn’t be a cause for great concern. Most are harmless and can disappear without any treatment. Minor rashes typically are red; with flat or raised bumps or blisters that occur on the hands, feet, face, trunk or mouth. Often they are associated with a fever, either before the rash occurs or when it appears.

The easiest way to assess if a rash is something more serious is just by appearance. Placing a finger onto the skin of the rash to assess if it is blanching. This means that when pressure is placed by your finger onto the skin and when you lift your finger off the redness of the skin temporarily disappears. If the redness does not disappear when you lift your finger off or if your child has a rash of small, bright-red or purple spots or bruises that do not blanch this indicates a more serious rash. Rashes like this need urgent assessment by a doctor at your local emergency department or via the My Emergency Doctor App to beat the wait and be seen to immediately by a doctor.

There are many different causes of a rash and in nearly all cases it is not important to know which virus is causing the rash. Antibiotics do not work on viruses and are not given to children with rashes caused from viral infections.

To help you manage with your sick children and their rash at home we recommend:

  • encourage plenty of oral fluids
  • if they are uncomfortable or miserable treat their fevers with paracetamol
  • encourage rest


To avoid transmission of the virus wash your hands after touching any bodily fluid and avoid sharing household items like cutlery, cups, towels and toothbrushes.

Should you be concerned about your child or if they are

  • Lethargic or drowsy
  • Not drinking water
  • Have a persistent high fever that does not reduce
  • Have a febrile convulsion


Or if you are pregnant and concerned about transmission of the rash and illness to your unborn baby seek a review from your medical practitioner or via the experienced doctors on the My Emergency Doctor App today.