Poison oak little red itchy bumps.

  • 3
Female age 10  red itchy bumps on hands and arms, had for 3 days all ready tried anti itch cream but burned

3 Answers

These messages are for mutual support and information sharing only. Always consult your doctor before trying anything you read here.
Red itchy rash hands and arms

The allergic rash should start to settle down naturally. Ways to soothe the rash and prevent it from getting worse include:

  • Staying away from the poison oak and keeping the rash from getting irritated or infected by anything else.
  • Not scratching at the itch as this can cause more damage, itchiness, pain, and infection.
  • Simple, clean, warm water bathing, followed by clean, dry, gentle patting or natural drying helps.
  • Using emollient cream to protect the skin from losing moisture and keep the skin’s barrier function. Emollient cream is available for purchase online.


  • Antihistamines, like diphenhydramine, can ease the itchiness. A range of antihistamines is available for purchase over the counter or online.

You need to see a doctor if the rash does not go away within 3 to 4 weeks or symptoms get worse.

Calamine lotion. Applying this over-the-counter (OTC) anti-itch medication can help soothe your symptoms.

OTC hydrocortisone topical cream. This product can help ease the itch.

Prescription corticosteroid medicine. If your reaction is severe or affects sensitive parts of your body — such as the mouth, on or near the eyes, or genitals — see your doctor for a prescription, such as prednisone. Depending on where your rash is, your doctor may recommend the steroid be taken by mouth or be applied directly to the skin. You may also need an injection of corticosteroid. This treatment is meant to help reduce the severity of your reaction, though it can have side effects.

Antihistamines in pill form. These can also be used to reduce itching. 

Aluminum hydroxide gel, zinc acetate, or zinc oxide. Doctors may recommend these treatments to dry out wet blisters, which often ooze liquid.

Antibiotic ointment or medication. Some people develop a skin infection with inflammation — such as cellulitis or folliculitis — around their rash, especially if they’ve been itching it. In this case, your doctor will prescribe antibiotics. It’s likely your rash is infected if you have:

  • a fever
  • feel swelling around the rash
  • feel warmth around the rash
  • see pus around the rash

Don’t apply antihistamine to your skin, as that can cause further irritation. You should also avoid topical anesthetics, such as benzocaine.