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10 Home Tips to Combat Itchy Skin

Itchy skin is typically caused by dryness or irritants coming in contact with skin. Medically known as pruritus, itchy skin causes an uncomfortable sensation that makes you want to scratch. It can be localized in certain areas or affect the whole body. There are many different causes of itchy skin, which can include hot showers, dry winter weather, harsh soaps, eczema, and psoriasis. It is essential to protect your skin in order to prevent this irritating feeling. There are numerous things you can do at home to protect your skin and stop itching.

10 Home Tips to Combat Itchy Skin
1

Warm Bath

Taking a warm bath with ground oatmeal or baking soda can help for overall itch relief. Oatmeal is soothing and moisturizing, and it can help relieve itchiness and pain caused by cracked skin. Add one to two cups of uncooked, ground oatmeal or one cup of baking soda to the warm water.

2

Moisturize

This is an obvious tip that helps nourish and protect skin. Some people wait until it's too late, and only moisturize when skin is already dried and cracked. You can be proactive and moisturize right after showering to promote healthy skin. Natural moisturizers are widely preferred - try coconut oil or lavender oil.

3

Oils

Natural oils provide a barrier and protect the skin from outside irritants. Oils are easily absorbed into the top layer of skin, keeping it supple and hydrated. Examples of natural oils are coconut, lavender, and peppermint. These oils are antibacterial and antioxidant, making them effective in preventing from infection.

4

Essential Fatty Acids

Consuming more essential fatty acids can be highly beneficial for your skin health. Try incorporating more avocadoes and salmon into your diet, or take fish oil supplements to promote healthy skin and hair.

5

Wear Gloves

Wearing rubber gloves before washing dishes or doing housework that involves harsh cleaning products will help protect your hands. Keeping a durable pair by the sink will help remind you to wear them. Additionally, you should also wear warm gloves during the cold winter months to protect your hands.

6

Cold Compress

Placing a wet, cold cloth onto the affected area can help soothe inflammation and reduce itching. It may also be helpful to dab some cooling peppermint oil onto the cloth before applying.

7

Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar can be effective for treating dry, cracked, and infected skin. It is antiseptic, antifungal, and antibacterial, and offers anti-itching properties. Dilute some apple cider vinegar onto a cotton ball and rub it on the affected areas.

8

Drink Water

Many people forget that dehydration is a leading cause of dry, itchy skin. Staying hydrated is vital to promoting healthy, moisturized skin.

9

Wear Breathable Fabrics

Itchy skin can be caused by irritations and allergic reactions to some clothing materials, like wool or polyester. Try wearing loose, soft, cotton clothing that is gentle on skin.

10

Reduce Stress

High stress can cause the body to release a chemical called histamine, which causes itching, flushing, and rashes. It is important to manage stress to prevent itchy skin. Yoga, meditation, and exercising regularly are great ways to relieve stress.

Itchy skin is uncomfortable and can be caused by several things, like hot showers and hormone imbalance. It is important to protect your skin, especially against harsh winter weather. There are many things you can do at home to relieve itchy skin, such as taking an oatmeal bath and moisturizing with coconut or lavender oil. Read about dealing with itchy skin at work.

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Sources:
  • Mayo Clinic Staff. (2014). Itchy skin (pruritus). Retrieved December 17, 2014, from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/itchy-skin/basics/causes/con-20028460
  • University of Washington. (2014). Maintaining Healthy Skin - Part 1. Retrieved December 17, 2014, from http://sci.washington.edu/info/pamphlets/skin_1.asp