Itching: Possible Causes in Adult Men and Women
Have you ever had an affected area on your skin? The uncomfortable sensation that makes you scratch that part is called itching. Pruritus is the medicinal term for itching.
Itching affects any body part. This state can be generalized (the whole body experiences the itching) and localized (only specific parts experiences itching). Rash and spots might occur on the itchy areas. Mild, momentary itching is frequent; however, this issue might get severe and frustrate you.
Why We Feel Itching
Scratching is a form of pain, but to wipe out an itch, you depend on it. By scratching, you are sending signals of low-level pain to your brain. These signals distract your brain from the itch temporarily. To halt the endless need to scrape the back, scalp, back, or other body parts, you must know why you feel itchy. Is it dry skin, allergic reaction, or other conditions? Let’s find out.
Most Common Causes of Itching
- Skin Conditions
Dry skin might be very itchy. This is more severe in bad weather and regions with dry air. Age also results in dry skin conditions.
To alleviate the dry skin itch apply the following tips.
• Apply moisturizer after taking a shower before wiping the water and again after changing clothes
• Stay hydrated by consuming a lot of water or fluids
• Use hydrating and mild soaps
• Avoid hot water shower and make the shower quick
• Utilize a humidifier
- Pregnancy or Menopause
Pregnancy and menopause cause itching due to changes in hormones. Over 1 out of 10 pregnant females have itching problems. This ranges from mild rashes to severe conditions.
- Bites of Insects
Bites of insects can result in itchy skin. These bites often leave a pinprick-like area or a small hole that is very itchy. Insects such as mosquitoes, bed bugs, and lice can bite you, and the treatments vary. You should visit your doctor if you experience constant itching after an insect bite. To avoid making the situation worse, you should avoid scratching this part. Also, avoid taking OTPs like Neosporin because you might develop a hypersensitive reaction on your skin.
- Side Effects of Treatment
One of the side effects of treatment is itchy skin. However, this does not occur to everyone and can take place with or without rashes. For instance, HGH or growth hormone medication (happens as a side effect of treatment with Genotropin, for example), prescription pain killers, and blood pressure medications may have itching as a side effect.
Suppose you feel that your medication results in itchy skin, you should visit your doctor before withdrawing from the drug. The physician will advise you on alternative medicines or the way forward.
- Allergic Reaction
Soaps, wool, chemicals, and other elements can cause irritation, rashes, and itching on your skin. Sometimes other substances, like cosmetics or poison ivy, may result in an allergic reaction. Reactions to various drugs, for example, narcotic pain or HGH medications, may result in itchy skin.
- Systemic Conditions
Another cause of itching is systemic conditions. These conditions include HIV infection and AIDS, Sarcoidosis, Hepatitis C, and many more.
When It Becomes Dangerous, and You Need to See a Doctor
Many itching conditions improve within a short period. However, if your itch has lasted for a while, it is severe, keeps on coming back, and has other symptoms, including swelling and redness, you should visit the GP.
Another severe case is if your whole body itches. If this is the case, visit your doctor because it might be a sign of more severe disease. The doctors ask a few questions regarding your symptoms and examine your skin to see if they will find any observable symptoms.
In other cases, they take a swab or a skin scraping and test it to identify the itch’s root cause. They may also conduct a blood test to identify underlying issues, such as kidney or thyroid disease. They may refer you to a specialist for specific treatment or further checkup based on the cause found.
How to Avoid Dangerous Conditions
Are you worried about the itchy skin and would like to avoid severe conditions? Call your doctor and schedule an appointment. They will offer you the assistance you deserve.
Natural Remedies That Can Help
There exist several home remedies that can offer you instant, temporary itch relief. Some of these remedies include the following.
• Apply OTC (over-the-counter) anti-itch cream, such as nonprescription corticosteroid ointments, calamine lotion, capsaicin, or menthol ointment topical anesthetics.
• Apply unscented and hypoallergenic moisturizers on your skin frequently (a minimum of one time a day)
• Consume an OTC reaction drug that has antihistamines (it might cause drowsiness)
• To soothe your itchy skin, take a cold or lukewarm shower with baking soda, Epsom salt, or colloidal oatmeal.
• To keep the air in the house moist, use a humidifier.
• Avoid scratching the skin by putting on hand gloves, covering itchy areas, and trimming the nails. This will help to prevent infections and making the itch worse.
• Wear light clothes to avoid irritating skin because tight clothes cause sweating that worsens the itching
Finally, itching can be uncomfortable. If you are experiencing it and would like to know the cause, contact us today to schedule an appointment.