English 3 MIN READ 1125 VIEWS April 13, 2024

Small Red Dots on Skin: Here’s Why They Occur

Written By HealthKart
Medically Reviewed By Dr. Aarti Nehra

At times, you might have spotted small red dots on skin, which might cause concern and discomfort. While some tiny red spots on skin may be caused due to allergies or irritations, some might be indicative of an underlying health concern, including an autoimmune disease or infection. In order to know when to seek medical attention and when these small red dots on skin can be treated at home, it is important to understand their causes, signs and symptoms. So, without further ado, let’s delve further into this topic and know more about red spots on skin not itchy.

Causes of Small Red Dots on Skin

Tiny red spots on skin can be red, purple, or brown in colour. These are usually painless and don’t cause any itching. These small red spots on skin are formed when the capillaries, which are the tiny blood vessels, tend to break and cause blood leakage under the skin. This blood takes the appearance of small red dots on skin. 

These spots are not a medical condition per se but are a sign of an underlying health issue, be it minor or something as serious as an autoimmune disease. Now that you have the basic knowledge of flat red spots on skin, let’s look at the potential causes to watch out for, in addition to discussing treatment methods.

  • Heat rash: Heat rashes are quite common during the summer months. This happens when there is a blockage in the sweat glands. This, in turn, traps the sweat, thus causing tiny itchy bumps on skin. They can also cause itching and mild pain.
  • Insect bites: This is no unknown fact that insect bites are also a common reason for causing itchy/non itchy small red spots on skin. These occur due to bites from fleas, ticks or mosquitoes.
  • Allergies: Some allergies may also cause red spots on skin, which include contact dermatitis and eczema. These allergies may cause itchy, small red dots on skin, apart from other signs like dry, flaky or scaly skin. Some medications may also cause an allergic reaction, thereby resulting in development of small red spots on skin. If these are hives, they can be itchy and have a raised appearance, thereby causing more discomfort as compared to non-itchy ones.
  • Infections: Bacterial and viral infections are also responsible for causing rashes or tiny red spots on skin. At times, these red spots can cause itching too and extreme discomfort. Some of the infections causing small red dots on skin are shingles, rubella, dengue, chicken pox, parvovirus B19, enterovirus, scarlet fever, meningitis, sepsis etc. 
  • Blood disorders: Blood-related diseases, like leukaemia, anaemia, vascular diseases, Bernard-Soulier syndrome, Glanzmann thrombasthenia etc., may also cause flat red spots on skin. Hence, it is important to consult a healthcare professional if the spots are persistent and don’t fade away with OTC drugs.
  • Chronic ailments: Some congenital and/or connective tissue disorders may also result in development of small red spots on skin. These include lupus, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome and chronic liver disease.
  • Autoimmune diseases: Last but not the least, there are autoimmune diseases, like psoriasis and lichen planus, which may result in development of flat and/or tiny itchy bumps on skin.
  • Vascular conditions: There are some vascular conditions, which cause small red spots on skin because of broken capillaries. These can be purple, red or brown coloured. Examples of such conditions include petechiae and purpura.

Solving the Problem of Tiny Red Spots on Skin

Treatment therapies for small red spots on skin entirely depend on the cause as there is always an underlying health condition behind the same. If you see small red spots on skin, which are due to an injury or minor allergy, then you don’t need to fret much as these can easily be treated at home only by taking a regular course of antibiotics or OTC medications. 

But if you get afflicted with a severe infection, including blood-related diseases or autoimmune disorders, you would be required to visit a medical professional. They will subsequently suggest tailor-made treatment plans. There may be times when you might also have to undergo chemotherapy or take immunosuppressant drugs so as to regulate the development of small red dots on skin.


The main takeaway here is that small red dots on skin are usually harmless and might go away on their own, but there are some cases wherein symptoms can be severe, persistent or even accompany other concerning symptoms. This makes it highly important to consult your healthcare provider for diagnosing the actual cause. Furthermore, it is also important to know about causes and symptoms so that you can make decisions accordingly in managing small red dots on skin.

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