Itchiness

Introduction

Itching is an irritation in the skin that elicits an urge to scratch. It is a superficial sensation in the skin, probably originating at the border between the epidermis and the dermis. Histamine, a body chemical released in response to contact with an irritant of some kind, is thought to be one of the most common triggers for itching, although there are other chemical mediators in the skin and blood. When confronted with an itch, most of us tend to throw self-discipline out the door and scratch to our skin's content. While that may prove momentarily satisfying, scratching excessively can injure the skin. And if the skin is broken, it leaves us open to infection.

Symptoms

Depending upon the underlying cause, itching may be associated with other symptoms and signs. Most commonly, these associated findings include skin lesions such as rash, blisters, bumps, or redness of the affected area. Dryness of the skin is a common cause of itch. Itching of skin can lead to tears in the skin (excoriations) from scratching. Less commonly, generalized itching can be a sign of chronic medical conditions such asliver disease. In these situations, there may be no changes to the appearance of the skin.
  • Redness
  • Bumps, spots or blisters
  • Dry, cracked skin
  • Leathery or scaly texture to the skin
Sometimes itchiness lasts a long time and can be intense. As you rub or scratch the area, it gets itchier. And the more it itches, the more you scratch. Breaking this itch-scratch cycle can be difficult, but continued scratching can damage your skin or cause infection.

How can I know if I have Itching?

If the itching:
  • Lasts more than two weeks and doesn't improve with self-care measures
  • Is severe and distracts you from your daily routines or prevents you from sleeping
  • Can't be easily explained
  • Affects your whole body
  • Is accompanied by other symptoms, such as extreme tiredness, weight loss, changes in bowel habits or urinary frequency, fever, or redness of the skin

Food That Cure Itching

Here are a few natural remedies you can try using materials available in your kitchen to relieve itching.
Coconut oil: Yes, your mother was indeed right when she said that coconut oil is good for itchy skin. Whether due to dry skin or an insect bite, whatever the cause of the itch, coconut oil can work wonders. The best way to use it is to rub a little coconut oil directly onto the affected area. If you suffer from a widespread itch all over the body especially during the winter, soak in a bathtub of lukewarm water; then just pat yourself dry and apply the oil all over.

Lemon: With a rich content of vitamin C and bleaching properties, lemons are one of the best remedies for itchy skin. The volatile oil in lemon has the ability to numb sensations and is also good against inflammation. Simply cut a lemon in two and squeeze out a little juice over the itchy area; allow to air dry and you'll soon find some relief.

Baking Soda: An itch restricted to a small area can be managed with baking soda. All you need to do is add 1 part of water to three parts of baking soda to make a paste; then apply this paste to the itchy area. However, don't use this remedy if the skin is broken. If the itch is spread all over the body, add a cup of baking soda into a tubful of lukewarm water and soak in it for half an hour; then dry in air.

Apple Cider Vinegar: Many people use vinegar on the scalp for dandruff; by the same logic, it works well for itchy skin, too. It has a good antiseptic and antifungal action and this makes it a good anti-itching agent. Dip a cotton ball or cloth in a little apple cider vinegar and dab on the itchy area. Or if you feel a general itchy sensation all over the body, add a cupful into your bath water. Apart from beating itchy skin.

Aloe Vera: With all its moisturizing action, aloe vera is one of the most effective skin smoothening agents. When you rub the gel over an itchy spot, it helps reduce the skin irritation in that area and provides quick relief from itching. Just break a leaf from the plant, cut it lengthwise using a knife and using a spoon, scoop out the jelly-like substance inside. Apply a little of this gel to the itchy area and leave it on for a few minutes.



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