Itchy and burning skin can be painful, distressing, and sometimes concerning, not least because there are so many different reasons, some more serious than others. Sometimes, further damage can be caused due to the often overwhelming temptation to scratch the affected areas, and this can exacerbate the issue. Therefore, it is wise to try and relieve and itchy and burning skin. Read on to find out how you can do this.
Itchy skin on occasion is normal, and usually, it will go away on its own. However, itchy skin can sometimes become a problem when it is chronic or very severe, and scratching will sometimes have no effect or even worsen the unpleasant sensation. Such itchiness can be generalized, when the person experiences itchy skin over their whole body, or localized, when the itchy skin is confined to one area. There are a variety of factors that can cause itchy skin, including:
- Hormonal changes
- An allergy
- A fungal infection
- Overactive thyroid
- Insect bites and stings
- Liver or kidney problems
How to Relieve Itchy Skin
Treating the underlying condition is the best way to relieve the itchy skin in the long term, but meanwhile, it is useful to know tips to reduce itching when it occurs. Some remedies that have proved useful for many people are:
- Keep skin moist using oil or a moisturizer
- Use a cold compress on the affected area
- Apply calamine lotion to the affected area
- Avoid wearing wool or other irritating clothing
- Try using natural or unperfumed toiletry products
- Make sure shower or bath water is not too hot, and keep it cool if possible
Burning skin is a sensation of heat or burning on an area of skin that is not actually physically burning. This can often come without warning and can be incredibly uncomfortable. It is often related to nerves, but other causes do exist. Some of the most common are:
- Nerve damage
- Multiple sclerosis
- Insect stings and bites
- Natural wear and tear
- Autoimmune disorders
- Nutritional deficiencies
How to Relieve Burning Skin
The underlying cause of burning skin might or might not have a cure, so it is best to first see a doctor in order to receive treatment or surgery you could need. Dealing with the root cause is obviously the best way to relieve burning skin permanently, but in the meantime, or if this cannot be done, there are certain things you can do to relieve the sensation of burning skin:
- The pain can be dealt with through the use of over the counter painkillers or anti-inflammatories. However, if you are using any other medications, check with your doctor to see if this is safe.
- Use a soothing balm or cream if it is due to an insect bite.
- Keep a cold compress on the area to cool down the skin.
- Increase your intake of fruit and vegetables, which could help if the burning is due to nutritional deficiencies.
- Shower or bathe only in cool water.
- Avoid overexerting the area - if the burning is due to natural wear and tear or an injury that you might not even know you have, the area might just need to rest for a while, and doing too much could do more harm than good.
There are a myriad of factors that can contribute to itchy or burning skin, and finding out the underlying cause in order to deal with the problem at the root should be the first step. However, this remedy will most likely not be immediate, and so implementing some home remedies to relieve the pain can lead to less discomfort and less chance of causing long-term damage by scratching.
- American Academy of Dermatology. (n.d.). 10 reasons your skin itches uncontrollably and how to get relief. Retrieved May 9, 2019, from https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/itchy-skin/skin-itches-uncontrollably
- Mayo Clinic. (2018). Itchy skin (pruritus): Symptoms & causes | Diagnosis & treatment. Retrieved May 9, 2019, from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/itchy-skin/symptoms-causes/syc-20355006 | https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/itchy-skin/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20355010
- Multiple Sclerosis Trust. (n.d.). Tingling, crawling, burning or prickling in the skin. What IS going on here? Retrieved May 9, 2019, from https://www.mstrust.org.uk/news/views-and-comments/tingling-crawling-burning-or-prickling-skin-what-going-here
- NHS. (2017). Itchy skin. Retrieved May 9, 2019, from https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/itchy-skin/