Red Spots on Legs Causes, Symptoms and Relief of These Dots or Bumps


Having red spots on legs whether itchy or not itchy, bumpy or flat, small or big indicates something wrong with your legs. Let us look at causes, their symptoms, non-itchy cases and ways to get rid of these spots (treatments and home remedies).


Red dots on legs (spots, rashes or patches) can be flat, raised, or bumpy. They also come in various sizes ranging from small on legs to bigger ones. Their shapes will also vary as well as them being itchy or non-itchy.

Apart from occurring on the legs, they occasionally occur on the hands and torso.


There are many causes that can lead to harmless or harmful spots i.e., those that might require medical attention. 

Their shapes, colors, and behavior should help you get a hint on their possible causes. Here are some of the common causes: 

Allergies and irritations

Allergies have the potential to trigger such spots on an individual’s legs and even other parts of the body. Allergic reaction in some people can be linked to certain foods, some medications, temperatures, insect bites among many others.

Allergies, for example, can trigger atopic dermatitis that leads to the eruption of red dots. The resultant dots are usually itchy and more common in children than in adults. They sometimes appear like rashes on an individual’s skin.

There is also another condition called contact dermatitis. This body reaction is due to irritants such as latex, cosmetics, and other substances when they are exposed to your skin. This condition is normally accompanied by itchy-blistered spots on the legs or any other part of the body that is affected. The best solution for this case is to try to find out the substances that you are allergic to and give them your back.


Eczema is another possible cause of dry red spots on legs that may sometimes swell and become painful. You get eczema when the skin reacts to allergies or irritations such as nickel, poison ivy among many more. It can also be due to other illness that attacks immune system for example HIV.

When you have it, eczema may change from skin rashes to healthy skin and bumps at different periods. This condition has some genetic links where some people are predisposed to getting it.

Finally, eczema is more prevalent in children and habitually appears on the legs and other parts of the body such as face and neck.


This condition usually occurs when the production of skin cell rises beyond the normal level. The most common type of psoriasis is plaque psoriasis, which develops alongside dry, itchy red patches on people’s skin including legs and it is usually accompanied by scaly and silver white spot. Some other symptoms of psoriasis may have symptoms such as cracked, dry skin, stiff, swollen joints, itching, and burning

Some other conditions that can influence the occurrence of psoriasis condition include injuries, infections, stress, cold weather, smoking and some medications. Actually, this conditions can influence the body`s T cells to erroneously attack healthy skin cells rather than the infections

Remember this is a problem of the immune system and it cannot be eradicated completely but there are many therapies available to manage it.


This condition is commonly experienced in lower legs. It is the inflammation of the hair follicles. According to, folliculitis is commonly triggered by shaving the legs. In some circumstances, they may be very itchy. This condition can be prevented by staying away from shaving and waxing.

Certain medications

When they are on the lower part of the legs can they could have been induced by certain medications. A good example is an exposure to cytotoxic drugs used to cure arthritis. This spots can be due to a bleeding experienced under the skin during the application of this therapy. This kind of medication can also occur alongside some other side effects including fever, sore throat, and blood in urine or abnormal bruising.

Apart from inducing dots, certain medication can have severe symptoms that will require immediate medical attention.

Skin cancer

If you or somebody develops red splotches on the leg, the reason can be some types of skin cancers such as basal cell carcinoma and Bowen’s disease. These conditions usually develop slowly and their symptoms are actually reddish fleshy marks that can even bleed in some occasions.

The second type of skin cancer is invasive squamous cell carcinoma, it grows rapidly into scaly lumps. These patches should be taken very seriously since they can be life-threatening. Besides other treatments, surgical removal can be the suitable therapy for various types of skin cancers.


This condition is caused by inflammation of blood vessels in certain part of the body. It can initiate the thickening and weakening of the blood vessels. If not appropriately controlled, it can lead to damaging of tissues and organs surrounding the affected blood vessels. indicates that “In addition to red blotches, symptoms of vasculitis include pain, loss of appetite and numbness and weakness in the affected area, such as the legs.” Activities threatening the immune system, infections or allergic reactions have the potential to trigger vasculitis.


Hives also are known as urticaria are raised, red bumps that can emerge anywhere in your body. They are majorly caused by exposure to allergens. Hives may be a result of your body reaction towards certain medication, insect bites, pollen, animal dander or exposure to adverse heat or cold among other factors.

Usually, hives can be very itchy. It is a cleverer idea to establish substances you are allergic to and avoid them. You can also be sure to cover your body away from insects such as bees, wasps, etc., to be very safe from this misfortune. According to American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, “Approximately 20 percent of people will get hives in their lifetime”

Watch out for infections

This is another important matter of concern. Usually, our skins are very sensitive some infections. Some fungal or bacterial infection can lead to various severe skin conditions that can lead to red lesions in the body. Such lesions due to bacteria or fungi can take time before they are fully healed.

Schamberg’s disease

This is a condition triggered when the blood vessels seep close to the skin surface. It is characterized by the onset of reddish-brown spots that usually begin on the legs before extending to other parts of the body such feet, ankles and so forth. Normally the red-brown spots are not painless and come from leaking blood vessels. Why reddish brown color? The release of iron content by the blood cell that forms the reddish brown color.


This refers to a reddish-brown skin problem that develops around the lower legs. It usually occurs alongside firm bumps that can appear tender, itchy or painless in some occasions. This non-cancerous condition can stay on the skin for quite a long time. Remember, at times when the skin bumps lead to discomfort, seek the medical attention.

Other Causes 

Apart from the mentioned above causes, more potential causes may include, ingrown hairs, a reaction to sulfur drugs or birth pills, peripheral artery disease, diabetes mellitus, Erythema nodosum, Scleroderma, insect bites among other causes.


The occurrence red dots on the legs can exist alongside some symptoms but this will depend on their cause, type, and nature. However, some spots might not show any symptoms. For instance, some may be itchy and very painful while others may not be painful.  Common characteristics or signs include the following: 

  • being flat or raised and bumpy 
  • Fluid-filled
  • Crusted edges
  • The size, in this case, can be very small like (small red dot on legs) a pinpoint or it can be very large (big red dots on legs).
  • They can be one, a few, many that can be widespread, or in clusters depending  triggers
  • The edges of the dots may be well regular or not well defined

It is very important to note that the above symptoms will depend on the underlying causes. These symptoms can also develop alongside a headache, nausea and vomiting and even lack of appetite. Note, severe symptoms require the immediate medical attention.

Small or tiny red spots on legs

What are these tiny red spots (petechiae) on my skin of my legs? These dots can have many causes including the ones we have already mentioned.

According to Jon Caniff, a holistic, certified nutritional practitioner (CNP) from Institute of Holistic Nutrition, Canada, (It is not easy when you can’t explain a particular symptom like this; for example, you may ask yourself if it’s an allergic reaction, or if it’s skin cancer. These dots on the skin are the result of internal bleeding or leaked capillaries. The bleeding will cause red, purple, or brown spots to appear, sometimes in clusters, and it will often look like a rash. Usually, these tiny red spots on the skin are not itchy and flat, and they don’t lose color when touched.”

Signs and symptoms 

Here are the symptoms that can often accompany tiny red spots on legs:

  • Unexplained nosebleeds
  • Heavy bleeding during menstrual periods
  • A collection of clotted blood under the skin
  • Excessive bleeding from the gums;
  • Easy bruising or bleeding;
  • Joint hemorrhage

Potential Causes

  • Prolonged straining
  • Injuries and sunburns
  • Sepsis
  • Allergic reactions
  • Malnutrition
  • Strep throat
  • Scarlet fever
  • infectious diseases

Non-itchy ones

Sometimes these spots can be no pain or itchiness. Possible causes of non-itchy red spots as follows:

1. Birthmarks

These are colored spots on your skin that one is born with. This spots can sometimes be reddish in color especially the vascular birthmarks and they can affect any part of the body including your legs. These birthmarks are normally caused by abnormal blood vessels in the skin.

2. Keratosis Pilaris

This harmless skin condition can occur anywhere in the body including the legs. Actually, it is due to overproduction of a protein called keratin. It can lead to small red bumps that are most common in thighs, buttocks and upper arms but can also develop in the lower legs.

3. Acne

This is another potential cause. Acne can have symptoms that can range from mild to severe ones. It is usually characterized by skin bumps that are non-itchy but could be swollen if infected.

4. Angiomas

These are growths the can develop anywhere in your body. They are usually triggered by blood vessels that have clumped together, appear as reddish domed bumps, and can be non-itchy.

5. More cause

Other factors that can as well lead to non-itchy red spots on legs, they include, boils, allergic reaction, heat rash, intertrigo, rosacea, bug bites, measles, Lyme disease, Dermatofibromas, petechiae and diaper rash.

However, some of the above causes can also cause itchy ones especially bug bites and allergic reaction. 


Well, as we have explained earlier, red spots on the legs or generally on the body can be due to several factors. Therefore, each case will be treated using right treatment. This is why you must the cause.

We will discuss general treatments and remedies for itchy or non-itchy. Here are some of the common treatments and remedies.

1. Topical treatments and creams

If they are due to Keratosis Pilaris, they can be managed using topical treatment. In addition, topical creams have the ability reduce symptoms and to get rid of red spots on the legs and other body parts. Common topical treatments include:

a). Hydrocortisone cream

In some circumstances, you might end up with some irritation and inflammation due to friction, sweat accumulation or the cause. For such conditions, Hydrocortisone cream can help in relieving the discomfort they will cause.

b). Over the counter anti-fungal cream

This is an important treatment if the spots are on your legs or and even some other parts of your body are caused by a fungal infection. There are both topical and oral can help hasten the removal of the red rash on your legs. Results may be noted after a week or so of using antifungal creams or oral ones.

2. Antihistamine therapy

If they are due to allergies, antihistamines can be the appropriate medication. Try the over the counter antihistamines. If they do not work, go to a doctor for diagnosis and prescription.

3. Use of moisturizers

Red bumps on your legs can be soothed through the application of deeply hydrating moisturizers. However, it also very important to recognize that, for some causes of the red bumps, this kind of therapy can be less fitting.

4. Gentle Cleansing

When suffering from mild red spots, even if they are somewhat bumpy a gentle cleanser can be of some help. However, avoid harsh soaps that dry out the skin and exacerbate the rough texture of the bumps. Remember the soaps should be detergent free.

5. Warm Compress treatment

Warm compress is an effective technique that will help you relieve the pain and heal the small or big painful red bumps on your legs and thighs. It will also make the bumps that may have turned to boils less inflamed and a bit softer. Yet again, warm compresses will advance the blood circulation in the skin on your leg leading to some relief.

This procedure can be applied by pouring some warm water into a plastic bag and wrapping it with a towel. You can then place it on the affected area for around 10 minutes.

Natural remedies

There are various natural products that can help in treating red spots on legs. Some of these products can be blended while others can just be used alone. While applying these products, you first have to know the causes of your red spots. Below are examples of natural remedy products:

  • Aloe Vera
  • Tee tree oil
  • Baby Powder
  • Coconut Oil
  • Olive oil

What to note

You should note that accurate diagnosis by a dermatologist is essential before any remedy. The nature of treatment employed depends on the specific cause for your case. Red spots on your legs might not disappear immediately, and hence it is advisable to be patient.

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