You want to scratch when you have itchy skin, but you know you shouldn’t. It’s hard to resist, though, especially when the itch is driving you crazy. You may be wondering what’s causing your itchy skin.
There are a number of things that can cause itchy skin.
Table of Contents
1. Dry Skin
Sometimes, itchy skin is simply a sign that your skin is dry. This can happen for a number of reasons, including weather conditions, drying soaps or cleansers, and certain medical conditions.
You may need to use moisturizers and creams to treat dry skin at home. You could require a topical steroid cream with prescription strength if the itching is severe.
Another common cause of itchy skin is an allergy. You may be allergic to a particular food, a medication, or something in your environment.
If you think you may have an allergy, it’s important to see your doctor so you can get proper treatment. Depending on the severity of your allergy, you may need medication to control the itch.
3. Insect Bites
If you’ve been outdoors, it’s possible you’ve been bitten by an insect. Insect bites can cause redness, swelling, and severe itching.
The best way to treat an insect bite is to clean it with soap and water and then apply a cold compress. If the bite is severe, you may need to see your doctor for treatment.
4. Skin Conditions
There are a number of skin conditions that can cause itching. These include eczema, psoriasis, and contact dermatitis.
If you have a skin condition, it’s important to see your doctor so you can get the proper treatment. Depending on the condition, you may need medication, light therapy, or other treatments.
5. Internal diseases
Whole-body itching could be a sign of an underlying condition like multiple myeloma, lymphoma, or liver disease. Itching that doesn’t go away or gets worse, especially at night, could be a sign of a more serious condition and you should see your doctor.
6. Nerve Disorders
Itchy skin can also be a sign of a nerve disorder. Neurodermatitis, for example, is a condition that causes the skin to itch in response to stress.
7. Psychological Problem
Itchy skin can sometimes be the result of a psychological problem. If you have anxiety or depression, you may find yourself itching more often. This is because anxiety and stress can cause changes in the body that make the skin itch.
8. Skin Cancer
Itchy skin can sometimes be a sign of skin cancer. This is most likely to be the case if the itch is new and you have a mole or other change in the appearance of the skin. If you’re concerned about skin cancer, see your doctor for an evaluation.
9. Reaction to a Plant or Marine Life
It’s possible that while you were outside, you came into contact with a plant or some sea life that gave you an itchy reaction. Plants that can make skin itchy include poison ivy, poison sumac, and poison oak.
If you think you’ve come in contact with a plant that has caused an allergic reaction, wash the affected area with soap and water as soon as possible. You may also need to take oral antihistamines or use a topical steroid cream to control the itch.
There are a number of things that can cause itchy skin. If you’re not sure what’s causing your itch, see your doctor for an evaluation. Treating the underlying cause of the itch is the best way to get relief.