This medication is used to treat a variety of skin conditions (such as insect bites, poison oak/ivy, eczema, dermatitis, allergies, rash, itching of the outer female genitals, anal itching). Hydrocortisone reduces the swelling, itching, and redness that can occur in these types of conditions. This medication is a mild corticosteroid.
There are many hydrocortisone products available. Many can be purchased without a prescription. Some products require a prescription. Consult your doctor or pharmacist on the choice of the product that is best for you.
Use this medication on the skin only. However, do not use it on the face or underarms unless directed to do so by your doctor. Some products are meant to be used on the scalp for various conditions. To correctly use these products, follow the directions on the product package.
Wash and dry your hands before using. Clean and dry the affected area. If you are using the lotion or foam, shake it well just before using. If you are using the spray, check the product package to see if it needs to be shaken before each use. Apply a small amount of medication to the affected area and gently rub in, usually up to 4 times a day or as directed by your doctor or the product package. Dosage and length of treatment depends on the type of condition being treated. Do not bandage, cover, or wrap the area unless directed to do so by your doctor. If used in or near the diaper area on an infant, do not use tight-fitting diapers or plastic pants.
After applying the medication, wash your hands, unless the hands are being treated. Avoid getting this medication in the eyes, nose, or mouth. If you get the medication in these areas, rinse with plenty of water. If irritation occurs or continues, contact your doctor right away.