Feeling itchy all the time makes you feel helpless and frustrated, yet more itchy. No matter how much you try to feel relief by digging in your nails into your skin, if that itch keeps borrowing itself further into your body, then you could be in for a tough medical ride.
A cause as obvious as a mosquito bite can quickly be dismissed. However, sometimes we cannot even figure out why our skin is constantly prone to this irritability.
Sleepless nights due to waking up multiple times can lead to horrible moodswings the next day. To top that, worries regarding marks on your body due to itching can be another dilemma altogether.
Dirty bedsheets and worn clothes can often be the reason behind ferocious itching. If changing your bedsheets or clothes does not help, then it is a bigger issue that needs to be tackled.
Your doctor can inform you of the exact condition you may be experiencing. However, we can guide you on what the issue may be. There are several probabilities. Therefore, consulting a doctor is essential.
STD (Sexually Transmitted Disease)
Chlamydia, genital herpes, genital warts, trichomoniasis, gonorrhea and other organisms can cause itching in sensitive areas. So if your itching is restricted to private areas, you are most probably victim to a STD.
These outbreaks can be treated with antiviral drugs.
Skin disease (prureceptive itch)
Dermatitis, eczema (chronic skin disorder that includes itchy, scaly rashes), psoriasis, scabies, burns, scars, insect bites and hives all come under the classification of skin diseases.
Pruriceptive itch is due to allergic reactions, inflammation, dryness or other skin damage.
This type of itch is often treated with antihistamines and other drugs that alter the immune reaction.
Pychological disorders (psychogenic itch)
Psychogenic itch is a category of chronic itch. Psychogenic pruritus is a common manifestation of psychological trouble, usually a localized itch. Anxiety can trigger skin conditions you already have. It also increases the rate and amount of sweating that can result in a sweat-related rash (also known as heat rash). Your body and mind are super connected, so when one is affected then the other one automatically gets involved in the battle.
Psychogenic itch is induced in response to the chemicals serotonin and norepinephrine. These chemicals influence stress, depression and delusional parasitosis (a false belief of parasite infestation).
It is treated with antidepressants and antipsychotic medications.
Rare forms of cancer
It may sound like the worst possible scenario but itching can also be a symptom of cancer. Cancers that involve the skin or have spread to the skin, such as malignant melanoma, leukemia and lymphoma, commonly cause itching. The possible causes for itchiness include internal illnesses more often than not.
Kidney failure (neurogenic itch)
Kidneys keep the right balance of minerals and nutrients in your blood. When they are unable to do so, dry and itchy skin can be a sign of the mineral and bone disease that often accompanies advanced kidney disease.
Neurogenic itch is seen in chronic liver and kidney disease in response to opioid neuropeptides.
It is treated with narcotic and non-narcotic analgesics.
The itch-scratch cycle makes skin dry and flaky due to it’s nature. Itch-scratch cycle is when you scratch yourself and aggravate the itching further.
Ointments, creams, and lotions (moisturizers) work by trapping existing moisture in your skin. To trap this much-needed moisture, you need to apply a moisturizer within few minutes of drying yourself after a shower. These products make your skin supple, in case your itching is due to just dryness rather than any of the reasons mentioned above.
Chase that itch away with some self-care. Pure petroleum jelly is very gentle on skin, making it perfect to soothe dry skin and keeping it hydrated.
Give those nails a break and chase that itch away by consulting your doctor ASAP. Best of luck.