Skin itching is an irritating sensation that causes an urge to scratch to relieve the discomfort.
Possible causes of itching are, for example, diseases of:
- Skin: rashes, dermatoses
Even if there is diffuse itching, the skin may appear completely normal. Or it can be accompanied by:
Causes of skin itching
There are many causes of itching.
Skin diseases that cause itching
Skin conditions that can cause itching include:
Contact dermatitis is a disease that causes red, inflamed or itchy skin after contact with irritants such as:
- Plants (e.g. poison ivy)
is a general term used to describe inflammation in which a red or reddened, itchy rash is usually seen.
Dry skin Dry skin
develops for many reasons and is characterized by:
It occurs most often on the legs, arms and abdominal area.
is an itchy, raised and reddened rash that forms after contact with the following allergens:
Other skin diseases
- Lichen planus – an itchy rash, not infectious, with no known cause.
- Psoriasis – a non-contagious skin disease that
- red spots
- produces gray-colored, itchy plaques
- Dandruff – a common, non-contagious skin disease of the scalp
- Folliculitis – a skin condition caused by inflamed hair follicles
- Prurigo nodulare – small blisters (filled with fluid) that itch severely
- Angioedema (urticaria gigantea) – Angioedema, also called “urticaria gigantea,” is a serious swelling under the skin and is sometimes accompanied by urticaria.
Allergies that cause skin itching
Allergy to mosquito bites
Symptoms to a mosquito bite are soft, reddened and itchy blisters.
The most severe symptoms of the allergic reaction are:
Most common food allergies
Food allergies, including allergies to peanuts, crustaceans and lactose, can cause allergic symptoms such as:
- Itchy eyes
Latex is a natural rubber, but its proteins can trigger a reaction of the immune system.
The most common symptom is a rash at the point of contact. Urticaria, swelling and other reactions are also possible.
Allergies and skin reactions
Sometimes itching is triggered by environmental factors, such as:
1. Cosmetics applied to the face
2. Dyes of fabrics 3. Contact with some metals, for example with nickel
4. Contact with some plant juices
5. Touching nettle plants
6. Allergy to certain foods or medicines (for example, aspirin or groups of drugs called opioids) 7. Heat pimples – itchy rash in very warm and humid climatic conditions
8. Sunburn – skin damage caused by exposure to ultraviolet (UV)
Infections that cause skin itching
Itching can be the symptom of an infection, for example:
- Chickenpox or another viral infection
- Fungal infection, for example:
- athlete’s foot, which causes itching between the toes;
- Tinea, which is a contagious disease and causes reddened rash in the form of rings that can develop all over the body.
- Yeast infection, such as thrush (Candida albicans), which can cause itching inside and outside the genitals.
- Fungal infections (caused by fungi or yeast) that can cause itching on a certain part of the body.
Without treatment, and in cases where treatment is ineffective, itching can occur generalized.
Parasites and insects
itching can also be caused by the following parasites:
1. scabies mites burrow into the skin and cause a disease called scabies; the most common symptoms are severe nocturnal itching and rashes.
2. Lice located in the pubic area or scalp hair.
3. Insect bites, for example, of bees, wasps, mosquitoes, fleas and bedbugs.
Yellow fever is a serious condition that is very similar to influenza and is spread by mosquitoes.
The symptoms that manifest themselves at an advanced stage consist of:
- Hepatic insufficiency
- Skin itching
- Bleeding: nosebleeds, bleeding gums and bleeding of the gastrointestinal tract (blood in the stool))
Systemic diseases that cause skin itching
The pathology of systemic diseases is manifested in a disruption of the entire body.
Sometimes itching can be the symptom of a systemic disease, such as:
1. Overactive thyroid or hyperthyroidism – the thyroid gland is located on the neck and produces hormones that control body growth and metabolism (the process of converting food into energy).
2. Long-term renal insufficiency.
3. Leukemia (blood cancer).
4. Some tumor types such as pancreatic, breast, and lung cancer.
5. Hodgkin’s lymphoma, which is a cancer of the lymphatic system that consists of a series of glands distributed throughout the body that form numerous specialized cells that are important for the immune system.
can trigger many different symptoms in the organism. It can, for example, cause skin redness, diarrhea, hunger, etc.
Some people find that they feel a lot of itching in particularly stressful situations.
Cirrhosis Cirrhosis is a severe liver fibrosis
that results in poor liver function. Fatigue and itching of the skin are two common symptoms.
Hepatitis A Hepatitis A
is a type of hepatitis of short duration.
As a rule, it does not need to be treated because the symptoms disappear on their own. Nevertheless, the following symptoms may occur:
Hepatitis B Hepatitis B
is highly contagious and spreads through blood infections or body fluids. This disease causes acute liver inflammation and shows the classic symptoms of liver diseases, which include:
- Skin itching
Hepatitis C Hepatitis C
is a highly infectious liver disease against which there is no vaccine.
As with the other types of jaundice, it causes:
- Itching etc.
Skin itching in pregnancy and menopause
In women, itching can be caused by hormonal imbalances.
Often the itching affects women during pregnancy and passes again after the birth of the child. During pregnancy, various skin conditions can develop and cause skin itching.
Among them are:
1. Papular urticaria, a common skin disease that forms during pregnancy and shows the following symptoms:
- Bubble formation
The skin reactions are caused on the thighs and abdomen.
2. Pregnancy itching is a rash with the following symptoms:
- Red dots
- Itchy skin
This disease mainly affects the arms, legs and upper body.
3. Pregnancy cholestasis is a rare pregnancy condition that affects the liver during pregnancy and causes itching without rash.
4. Pregnant women may also have eczema and psoriasis.
Even in menopause, itching is a common symptom that manifests itself between the ages of 45 and 55 due to an altered hormonal situation. It is directly related to the absence of monthly menstrual periods.
Altered hormone levels (for example, estrogens) are responsible for itching during menopause.
Skin itching in children
One cause of itching in children is milk allergy (4-5% of children).
An allergy to milk protein should not be confused with lactose intolerance. Rather, it is an immune reaction to milk protein.
The symptoms are:
- Abdominal cramps
Itching on the skin after showering
Dry skin causes itching and can be made worse by hot showers or climate changes. To avoid this problem, we recommend that:
- lukewarm showers
- Applying a moisturizer to still damp skin
One should consult a dermatologist or allergist if the symptoms persist.
Itching on the abdominal skin
There are several causes of itching on the abdomen.
- The most likely disorder is skin dryness or a skin allergy.
Applying a good moisturizer daily can help.
- In addition, when using a new soap, detergent or other chemicals, one should consider whether they can cause the reaction.
- If small pimples or blisters, similar to insect bites, are present, they may be caused by scabies mites, bedbugs or other similar infections.
- Fungal infections of the skin can present as:
– cracked skin
– itching on the abdomen
These conditions can be treated with over-the-counter antifungal creams.
- Rarely, isolated itching on the abdomen is the sign of a serious underlying disease.
Symptoms that occur along with itching
Itching on the skin can manifest itself in small areas, such as an arm or leg, but it can also affect the entire body.
A skin itch can occur without obvious noticeable skin changes. In other cases, the following may also occur:
- Red spots
- Dry and cracked skin
- Flaky skin
Sometimes itching can persist for a long time and be very violent.
The larger the itchy area, the more the person scratches himself.
Breaking the vicious cycle of itching and scratching can be challenging.
Therapy for skin itching and medication
Once the cause is established, the doctor will prescribe treatment for skin itching, which may include the following measures:
Corticosteroids in creams
Local application of these ointments can alleviate itching.
The doctor may order to deliver corticosteroids to the affected areas.
An over-the-counter hydrocortisone-containing cream that contains at least 1 percent hydrocortisone can temporarily alleviate itching.
Oral antihistamines and cortisone treatment
An over-the-counter oral antihistamine, such as diphenhydramine (Betadorm or others), may be helpful for severe itching.
These include oral antihistamines for allergies or urticaria and corticosteroids in the form of tablets for itching in inflammation of the skin.
Treatment of the underlying disease
Treatment of these diseases can reduce itching, for example in the case of:
- Kidney disease
- Iron deficiency
- Thyroid problem
Natural remedies for the treatment of skin itching
To alleviate itching and calm skin inflammation, one can try the following home remedies.
- Apply a moisturizer to the skin.
Apply the cream at least once or twice a day, preferably on areas affected by severe itching.
Among the products used against itching are in particular
- If possible, scratching should be avoided. Cover the itchy area if you can not refrain from scratching. Cut fingernails short and put on gloves during the night.
- Place cold and damp packs. Covering affected areas with bandages helps protect the skin and prevent scratching.
- Take a cool and soothing bath. Fill the tub with:
- Water and baking soda
- Uncooked oatmeal flour or colloidal oatmeal flour
- Wear cotton clothes. This helps to avoid irritation.
- Choose mild soaps without dyes or fragrances. Rinse the soap well away from the body.
- After washing, apply a moisturizer that protects the skin.
- If clothes, towels and bed linen are washed, a mild detergent without fragrances should be used.
- Avoid substances that can irritate the skin or lead to allergic reactions. These include:
Diet and nutrition for skin itching
In the case of chronic diseases, a natural diet is indispensable to detoxify and cleanse the body. The itching is often associated with diseases related to diet:
- Allergy – often caused by a grain-rich diet from the grass family
- Liver disease caused by:
- Fried foods
- Sweets and processed foods
- Milk and dairy products
- Fast food
- Infections – favored by poor nutrition, as well as the wrong combination of foods, as a result of which a fermentation and putrefactive process is provoked in the intestine.