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Itchy Bumps All Over My Body

Published: August 01, 2014
Dear TeenHealthFX,

I'm a 17 year old female and I have a numerous amount of bumps all over my body. The bumps basically appeared over night. They are little, red, itchy bumps that are on my legs, thighs, stomach, back, chest, and there are some on my arms. Yesterday [Friday] I remember my back occasionally itching, but nothing that bothered me. When I woke up this morning, I noticed bumps on my thighs. Then when I went to take a shower, I noticed them everywhere. They're all now very itchy, and they seem to be spreading. I don't think it may be a bites from a but because I've washed my sheets recently, but I'm washing them again just in case. I'm not sexually active. I'm not allergic to anything (just regular seasonal allergies, but they've never made my skin like this), and my pets do not have fleas, tics, etc. What might it be? Should I go see a doctor or just wait it out for a little while? Thank you.

Signed: Itchy Bumps All Over My Body

Dear Itchy Bumps All Over My Body,

TeenHealthFX thinks that it is important for you to meet with a medical health professional as soon as possible – either your primary care physician, adolescent medicine specialist, or a dermatologist (a skin health specialist). There are many possibilities of what may be causing these itchy bumps all over your body and without being able to conduct a full medication evaluation, FX would not be able to give you any kind of accurate diagnosis as to what the causing factor(s) are and what treatment is necessary. 

The following are some of the possibilities as to what could be causing these bumps: 

  • Allergic contact dermatitis: This is where the body’s immune system causes a skin reaction to direct contact with an allergen. It could be a certain kind of clothing material or detergent or fabric softener in the clothing, certain soaps and shampoos, or anything else coming in contact with the skin that the person is allergic to.
  • Autosensitization dermatitis: A skin reaction involving the development of skin lesions in response to infections (virus, bacteria, fungus, parasite).
  • Eczema: Chronic skin condition characterized by skin inflammation and irritation. It may be caused by allergies, irritants, or other factors, such as stress.
  • Viral rash.
  • Hives: Red, itchy, raised areas of the skin that appear in varying shapes and sizes. Hives can be caused by allergies to foods, medications, and insect bites, but sometimes have unknown causes as well.
  • Allergic drug rash: rashes that generally start within two weeks of taking a new medication.
  • Bug bites, such as with fleas or bed bugs: Bed bugs can leave bites along the skin that can look like hives or a rash. To learn more about bed bugs, treatments, and effective ways to rid you of a bed bug infestation, please read the Mayo Clinic article on Bed Bugs: Treatments and Drugs. 

Again, with all the possibilities of what could be causing your itchy, red bumps, FX cannot possibly give you an accurate diagnosis online. So please seek the care of a doctor as soon as possible so you can find out the cause of your bumps and receive treatment that will ease you of your symptoms.

If you don't have a doctor and live in northern New Jersey, you can call the Adolescent/Young Adult Center for Health at 973-971-6475 for an appointment or Girl’s Street – A Young Woman’s Health Program – at 908.522.2555. You can also contact your local teen health center or your insurance company for a list of in-network primary care physicians and/or dermatologists.


Signed: TeenHealthFX