Go to page content

Troubled by Neck Rash? Here’s What You Can Do

A variety of infections can lead to the development of a rash on the neck. While minor cases can be managed with basic home remedies, certain types of rashes might necessitate professional medical intervention.

IStock 1171085713

Experiencing a neck rash just before a significant occasion or event can bring about itchiness, frustration, and discomfort. The severity and appearance of the rash are contingent upon its underlying cause. The rash can manifest on the neck in varying tones of brown, red, or purple, and it may induce sensations of itchiness, heat, and pain. Additionally, it could be accompanied by the presence of spots or blisters.

Here are some possible causes and natural remedies for a neck rash.

Causes of Neck Rash

A neck rash is commonly linked to allergies. It can also be caused by stress, contact dermatitis, autoimmune diseases such as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), and bacterial, fungal, viral or parasitic infections.

Practitioners of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) believe that people with two specific body types – Yin Deficiency and Damp-Heat constitution – are more prone to a neck rash than others. 

“A shortage of passive (yin) energy prevents the regulation of body temperature, making you prone to a neck rash. Pathogenic factors like Dampness and Heat can restrict your Liver and Spleen’s ability to function properly, which leads to the same outcome.” 

Real Health Medical TCM Physician Kelvin Goh

Bacterial infections 

Some types of bacteria live on human skin but don’t do any damage to your body. However, infections can occur if you have a cut, open wound, or broken skin.

One type of bacterial skin infection is impetigo, which is caused by a bacteria called Group A Streptococcus. Symptoms will become noticeable within one to three days and appear as small, itchy red spots. These spots will turn into blisters that ooze fluid and form a crust when they start to heal. Your lymph nodes may also swell, but you won’t have a fever.

Another skin infection worth knowing is methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), which manifests from broken skin, especially in hairy areas. MRSA causes fever and appears as red and swollen skin bumps that are warm and painful to the touch. These bumps may also contain bacteria-filled pus or fluid.

Fungal infections 

Anyone can get a neck fungal rash but it’s more common if you: 

  • Experience urinary incontinence 
  • Sweat heavily or break out in sweat easily 
  • Are undergoing chemotherapy 
  • Are using new skincare products 
  • Are taking antibiotics long-term or on a high dose  
  • Have a weak immune system or a disease that weakens your immune system

A fungal rash called tinea versicolor develops from the excessive growth of a specific type of skin yeast. Patches of skin that are of a lighter or darker shade than your normal skin tone are the most prominent characteristic of the rash. You may also feel itchiness in the affected areas, especially in a hot environment. 

A lady scratching her neck with both hands due to itchiness of a neck rash
A neck rash can be disturbing due to its itchiness, so finding out the cause of the rash can help to tackle the issue effectively.

Viral infections 

There are three ways a virus can trigger the appearance of a neck rash. The rash can be a by-product of skin damage, or your body’s immune response to the virus. It may also be a physical reaction to toxins that the virus produces.

Viruses with a skin rash as a common symptom are: 

The rash appears as spots, bumps or blotches on your skin, and may itch. 

Parasitic infections

It may sound like something out of a horror movie, but you could get a rash from a parasitic infection. Parasites are small worms or insects that dig their way into the skin to lay eggs. These organisms can also live off human blood.

Human itch mites can do both, triggering an itchy skin rash called scabies.

Neck Rash Treatment Options

You can treat mild neck rashes with simple skin care practices. Avoid scrubbing your skin and applying cosmetic lotions or ointments directly on the rash.

Use gentle cleansers and warm water instead to clean your skin. Pat dry the affected area and leave it exposed to air.

Hydrocortisone cream (1%) is available with or without a prescription and can also help soothe a neck rash.

Should you notice any of these signs, you must consult a healthcare provider immediately: 

  • If you suspect you have a tick bite 
  • Have joint pain, fever, or a sore throat 
  • Have a purple rash that looks similar to skin bruising 
  • Have streaks of redness, swelling, or very tender skin areas 
  • Are short of breath, feel tightness in the throat, and have a swollen face 
A cup of tea and a plate of honeysuckle flowers
Brew yourself a cup of honeysuckle tea to help ease the neck rash symptoms.

Natural remedies for neck rash 

Try Honeysuckle (jin yin hua, 金银花), which has anti-bacterial properties and promotes good digestion. It also helps ease allergy symptoms by eliminating toxins and pathogens from the body.

To brew honeysuckle tea, steep six grams of dried honeysuckle into a pot and with 300 millilitres (ml) of water for 10 minutes before drinking. 

Like honeysuckle, Chinese skullcap roots (huang qin, 黄芩) have the abilities to calm allergic reactions, get rid of pathogens, and cool the body.

You may also wish to try the Calming Relief Moisturizing Cream for a itch relief.

Try cupping therapy or acupressure massage

Another treatment to consider is cupping therapy, which Physician Goh advocates to: 

  • Ease muscle tension 
  • Regulate imbalances in the body 
  • Release excess qi and encourage the circulation of Stagnant Qi 

To suppress inflammation and remove Heat from the body, you can self-massage acupoints like qu chi (LI11, 曲池) and tai yuan (LU9, 太渊). 

Try the tips and natural remedies outlined above and know when to seek medical assistance to reduce neck rash episodes. Alternative remedies may help, provided you consult a TCM practitioner beforehand.

If you’d like to share other treatments for a neck rash, tell us in the comments section below.

Share this article on

Was This Article Useful to You?

Want more healthy tips?

Get All Things Health in your mailbox today!

Subscribe to our newsletter

Related Articles

Monkey pox test min scaled
General Health

All You Need To Know About Monkey Pox

The Monkey Pox virus causes flu-like symptoms and a rash that may take weeks to clear. Here's what you need to know about this viral infection, including tips for staying healthy.

Read More
Chemotherapy min 1 scaled
General Health

Can TCM Help Reduce Chemotherapy Side Effects?

The tips in this article can help you better manage your chemotherapy side effects so the treatment is more manageable. Check them out here.

Read More
Ayurvedic medicine min scaled
General Health

Is Ayurvedic Medicine The Same As TCM?

Ayurvedic medicine is a great addition to your natural wellness routine. This guide explains where it came from, how it's similar to TCM, and how to incorporate it into your life.

Read More

The contents of the All Things Health website are for informational and educational purposes only.
Our website is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.