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Itchy Skin – Itchy Skin Causes and Treatment

Itchy skin is very common skin condition for both the sexes and people of all ages can suffer from an itchy skin. Itchy skin usually leads to severe discomfort especially in a social setting. As the name indicates, itchy skin is very often accompanied by a desire to keep scratching the surface of the skin. Though such scratching may seem to provide a temporary relief, it may as well increase the underlying complications of the disease. Itchy skin is also medically referred to as pruritus and may be a result of psoriasis or dermatitis. Itchy skin can either occur throughout an individual’s body or may be concentrated in one particular part of the patient’s body.

Itchy Skin Causes

There are different itchy skin causes. The most common itchy skin cause is said to be dry skin and this condition occurs when the skin is exposed to cold and dry outdoors and also warm and dry indoors.

Itchy-Skin

Source : wikipedia

Itchy skin can be a result of skin conditions, rashes, internal diseases, nerve disorders, irritation and allergic reactions, drugs and pregnancy. Eczema (dermatitis), hives, scabies, psoriasis, chickenpox, lice and dermatographism are known to cause itchy skin.

Internal diseases like iron deficiency anemia, leukemia, thyroid problems, lymphoma, and cancers are also some of the itchy skin causes and may affect the whole body. Nerve disorders such as pinched nerves, diabetes mellitus, multiple sclerosis, and shingles are also some of the itchy skin causes.

Certain substances such as chemicals, soaps, wool, and some other substances also initiate itchy skin. Some people are also known to develop itchy skin due to some kind of allergy to food. Certain kind of antifungal drugs, antibiotics or even narcotic pain medications also cause extensive itchy skin reactions. It is not uncommon for women to experience itchy skin condition during pregnancy. Abdomen, arms, breasts and thighs are some of the body parts that are prone to develop itchy skin. Patients with dermatitis should exercise extra caution during pregnancy as it has been observed to aggravate problems related to itchy skin. Like with most other diseases, stress can worsen the itching.

Itchy Skin Symptoms

It is common for itchy skin to be accompanied by redness and the roughening of skin. Certain people have also been observed to develop bumps or blisters of varying intensity. Dry and cracked skin with scaly texture are also symptoms of itchy skin. These symptoms can occur throughout the body of the individual or may show up in one particular part of the body. Also, depending on the underlying cause, the itching can either slowly subside or increase in its intensity. Itching that increases in intensity is definitely a cause of worry and appropriate medical attention is to be sought. Itchy skin that is accompanied by extreme fatigue, weight loss, and irregularity in bowel habits or urinary frequency should be brought to the attention of a medical practitioner. Such complications usually indicate that the body is suffering from other issues and the itchy skin is merely a symptom of those issues. However, it should be noted that some patients do not show any abnormalities and the skin looks completely normal and healthy from the surface despite the constant feeling to scratch it.

Itchy Skin Treatment

Itchy skin treatment is usually dependent on the cause and may include a wide variety of measures. Medications and light therapy are the usual itchy skin treatment methods for patients who have issues directly related to skin.

People who have itchy skin due to some underlying disease need to be treated for the disease and the itchy skin disappears once this disease is cured. Medications usually include both oral intake and the application of creams over affected areas. Corticosteroid creams are usually suggested to control itching. In light therapy, the affected is exposed to ultraviolet light of various wavelengths. This procedure usually requires multiple sessions and is continued till there is a substantial reduction in the intensity. Sometimes cure by medications and therapy can take some time and medical practitioners usually suggest short term relief measures. These include use of topical anesthetics such as lidocaine or benzocaine. Menthol, camphor and calamine are some of the ointments and lotions that are widely prescribed for application over affected areas so as to give a short term relief. It should be noted that these provide only short time relief and long term relief measures should not be discontinued or avoided.

With sufficient care and precautions, most patients are able to recover fully and sport a healthy skin in a short period.

Itchy Skin Causes

Source : flickr

Itchy Skin 2

Source : flickr

Itchy-Skin-3

Source : flickr

Home and Natural Itchy Skin Treatment

The following are some of the home remedies that have been widely prevalent as itchy skin treatment.

  • Aloe Vera, Myrrh oil, Tea tree oil, Onion juice, Evening primrose oil are some of the topical herbal relief remedies that are widely applied on the affected parts of the body to cure itchy skin condition and provide relief.
  • Flaxseed oil and Vitamin E can be taken orally in order to rehydrate skin which reduces the itchy feeling.
  • Substances like nickel, jewelry, perfume, cosmetics which are known to have allergic reactions can be avoided till there is a reasonable recovery in the affected area.
  • It is usually advisable to turn to mild soaps and perfumes which are free from chemical dyes and perfumes. Also, regular use of moisturizer is advised for speedy recovery from itchy skin.
  • An individual can switch to wearing smooth textured cotton clothing so that the cloth does not rub against the affected portion and increase the intensity of the scratching. This is true particularly for affected areas that need to remain covered for longer duration of time.
  • Some people sprinkle the bathing water with baking soda. Use of uncooked oatmeal or colloidal oatmeal in bathing water is also a very common itchy skin treatment.


Posted by in Diseases and Conditions, Skin Care

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