What Can You Do To Alleviate Itchy Skin?

Home Remedies for Itchy Skin and Ways to Prevent It

Itchy skin can be the result of a variety of conditions such as psoriasis, shingles or eczema, or in some instances, be the sign of a disease like ringworm or scabies, both of which are highly contagious. Sometimes, it can be hard to find a cause at all for itchy skin, and you’re left scratching yourself raw with no real clue as to why.

Whatever the cause of your itchy skin, alleviating the discomfort and soothing the sensation – not to mention the sore skin left after hours of constant itching – is often your first thought, even before you’ve consulted with your GP. Medicated products like Dermovate Cream can be used to treat all manner of inflammatory skin conditions safely and effectively, while your dermatologist may also recommend doing the following to alleviate your itchy skin:

  • Apply a cold, damp cloth or ice pack to the affected area

This can be safely done a number of times throughout the day, but you may need to apply the cloth or ice pack for up to 10 minutes to feel any real benefit and soothe the itch. 

  • Take an oatmeal bath

If your skin has begun to develop blisters or has started to ooze pus (hives, chickenpox, poison ivy and even sunburn can cause this to happen) an oatmeal bath can be incredibly soothing. 

  • Moisturise your skin

Although this can also be highly affective at alleviating your discomfort and soothing the affected area, it’s important that you always choose a moisturiser with no additives, and that isn’t perfumed, as this could aggravate your symptoms. 

  • Apply topical anaesthetics containing pramoxine

Always seek advice from a pharmacist or GP before using topical creams to treat your itchy skin.

  • Apply a cooling agent

Calamine lotion or a menthol balm can help to make your skin less itchy thanks to their cooling properties, but you could also try placing your own, mild moisturiser in the fridge to help achieve the same cooling effect. 

Whatever you choose to treat your itchy skin with, try and be mindful of how you apply it, since scratching the area could make matters worse and increase the risk of it becoming infected.  

What can you do to stop your skin from itching in the first place?

Dermatologists may recommend you do the following to try and stop your skin from itching:

  • Take lukewarm baths and showers

Where possible, avoid taking long, hot showers or baths; limiting your time to no more than 10 minutes.

  • Use unscented lotions and soaps

Any skincare products with an added fragrance or chemicals can aggravate your itchy skin and should be avoided at all costs. If in doubt, chat to a pharmacist about products that are safe and mild enough for your skin. 

  • Wear clothes that are cotton and loose-fitting

Certain rougher fabrics, like wool, can cause your skin to become itchy, particularly when your body temperature rises.

  • Avoid extreme changes in temperature

Try to keep the humidity levels in your home constantly cool and neutral, and if you’re prone to eczema and dry skin, try using a humidifier during the cooler, winter months. 

  • Reduce your stress levels

Stress can exacerbate an existing itchy skin condition, or even cause your skin to itch with no pre-existing condition.

You may find that a Topical Corticosteroid Dermovate Cream gets rid of your itchy skin or at least alleviates your symptoms so that you can lead a normal, happy life. But, if your itch persists even after treatment and taking the steps listed above, you should consult with a dermatologist; your GP may well be able to refer to you one. 

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