Itching For a Cure

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Is this an ongoing eczema or psoriasis flareup or do you notice lice, a flea, or mosquito bite?

Dermatological or Neuological Sensation

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An acute irritating sensation in your skin could last a minute or longer. It can flare up on your arm, hand, leg, foot, neck, scalp, nose, torso, crotch, or any other part of your body. Chronic itch lasts more than six weeks. If your itch is frequent or ongoing, what do derma­tolo­gists recommend you try before making an appointment?

If possible, determine the cause of itching (pruritus). It is best to examine the area before scratching. Scratching alters appear­ance of the skin, can cause secondary infection and lead to post-resolution scarring. If you break the skin, apply an anti-bacterial ointment and cover area with a bandage.

Do you notice lice, a flea, or mosquito? Your flesh is host to parasites that can cause irritation. Is this an ongoing eczema or psoriasis flareup? If so, you may need to replenish or obtain a new prescrip­tion for medica­tion. If you have not been previously diag­nosed with a cause, is there a rash?

Eczema is the itch that rashes.

Is eczema purely the domain of dermatology researchers? New evidence supports the patient-reported sensation that “eczema is the itch that rashes,” not the other way around. Neurons serving the skin directly interact with mast cells in clusters to trigger the massive hista­mine release associated with atopic dermatitis inflam­ma­tion, a form of eczema.

This does not necessari­ly mean that you will need to see a neurologist for relief from itching. Further research may lead to a prescrip­tion that blocks the interac­tion between the sensory neuron and the mast cells to see if doing so fore­stalls the cascade of events that leads to the inflammation.

A single small bump can be a sign of an insect bite. A tick bite that resembles a red bullseye target should be immedi­ately evaluated for Lyme’s disease by a derma­tolo­gist or urgent-call physician. Typical symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue, and a charac­teris­tic skin rash called erythema migraines. left untreated, infec­tion can spread to joints, the heart, and the nervous system.

Locate and eliminate the trigger.

You may have a food allergy. An immunology test confirms this. Contact dermatitis itching can be an allergic reaction to clothing or dust mites. Try to locate and elimi­nate the individual trigger. Avoid scratchy wool clothing. Wear breath­able cotton fabrics. If your skin dries out in the winter, a humidi­fier can be used to maintain moisture.

Itching for a Cure

Home Remedies

Washing an area that itches and applying a soothing emollient is a better option than scratching. The least invasive method of treating inflam­mation is with cooling. Apply an ice pack for 5 to 10 minutes. This may also be helpful for itchy eyes. Keep your skin moist.

Take a warm (not hot) shower using chemical-free soap or prepare an oatmeal bath if you have sunburn, blisters, hives, psoriasis, chickenpox (higher complications risk for adults), or shingles. Apply a fragrance-free moisturizer, perhaps stored in the refrigera­tor. Cooling agents with menthol or calamine may provide relief.

Itching distracts concentra­tion, which can cause distress, particularly when it is persistent. Endeavor to minimize stress. Procras­tina­tion also leads to stress since you end up reacting to things at the last minute. Avoid arguments.

Carve out a quiet time in your day to read. Keep hydrated by drinking a cup of water every 2 hours on average. If home remedies are unsuccess­ful, schedule an appoint­ment with a board-certified derma­tolo­gist for itchy skin or an ophthal­molo­gist for itchy eyes.

To support the writing of useful articles about dermatology, ClinicalPosters sells human anatomy posters, scientific posters and other products online. Slide extra posters into DeuPair Frames without removing from the wall or leave an encourag­ing comment to keep the work going. Audio may include sound effects or intention­ally omit details.

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