What is itchy skin?
Itchy skin is an uncomfortable sensation whose behavioral response creates a scratch reflex. This skin condition can appear in any part of the body and usually comes with symptoms like redness, dryness or scaly texture. Prolonged itchy skin may also lead to infection and skin injury. If the condition persists for more than two weeks, it is advisable to visit a dermatologist.
Causes of itchy skin
Causes of itchy skin can vary from infections to allergies and skin and medical disorders.
- Dry skin – Skin dryness can be caused by weather change, exposure to chemicals, and reaction to certain medication or bathing habits. This itchy skin with no rash condition can be treated by application of moisturizers, as lotions or creams and bathing with moisturizing soap. Drinking ample water to keep skin hydrated is very important.
- Food allergy – This allergy is caused when the body’s immune system doesn’t cope with inappropriate substances in food or drinks. Following this, rashes can develop on the skin causing itchiness. Some foods that people may be allergic to are seafood like prawns, dairy products, and soy products. The treatment is to identify the possible cause of the problem and avoid consuming those foods.
- Insect bites – Insect bites can cause injection of certain acids into the skin, thereby causing immediate swelling, rashes, and itchy skin. Application of ointments can reduce itchiness and redness.
- Varicella – Chickenpox, or varicella, is a contagious disease caused by varicella roster virus. It causes a typical skin rash that forms small, itchy blisters, which tend to scab over after few days.
- The final stage of renal disease – Due to the inability of kidneys, the body tends to retain waste material in it, thereby causing an itchy skin among various other problems. The common symptoms include ulcers and butterfly-shaped rash on face, which may worsen with sun exposure.
- Biliary – This is caused by injury to gallstones, gallbladder or liver resulting in the extremely itchy skin along with yellowing of urine, skin, nails, and eyes. This can cause further infection.
- Eczema – Eczema is a group of diseases that cause inflammation of the skin, typically with itchy skin and red rash. It can be treated with steroid creams.
- Hives – It is an inflammation which is caused by the release of histamine, a chemical in the body. This secretion results in small blood vessels to leak which causes the skin to swell. Exposure to sun and extreme weather and allergies trigger the condition and cause itchy skin with blisters and small bumps.