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Itching

The presence of another disorder in the body brings about the occurrence of a need to itch and hence itching by itself is not an independent condition. The sensation of itchiness and the need to scratch can arise in all areas of the body, alternately it can arise in a specific place on body-such as a small patch in a defined area. If the itchy area is vigorously scratched the skin becomes red, bleeding may result if the skin is penetrated and bumps may form on the spot where it itches. Since the possibility of an infection is always present, scratching should be avoided in all cases even if the urge to do so is immense.

The presence of a fungal, parasitic or a scabies infection is usually the cause of itching especially if a skin rash occurs. Certain conditions like chickenpox or measles can also being it on due to an internal process and manifestation, at the same time conditions like eczema and psoriasis or even dandruff and other problems of the skin can cause acute itching to develop. Even in the absence of an eruption on the surface of the skin, itching on the skin can be caused by certain type of allergies. The final destination of detoxified substances in the body is through to the exterior through the skin, therefore many of the excess toxins are exuded through the skin and this may cause itching. With reference to the aged and elderly, a lack of essential fatty acids in the body can bring on the symptoms of a dry skin causing an immense amount of itching, itching is of course also brought on by various insect bites, mosquitoes in particular. Where other reliable symptoms exists for the disease, the presence of an itchy skin can signal the advent of a more severe condition, like a metabolic disorder such as diabetes, or even leukemia and renal dysfunction.

A drug or a prescription medication can also bring on the incidence of itching as a side effect in the body of an individual. The yellowing of the skin and itching on the skin can also come due to the presence of accumulated bile, in conditions like jaundice. Itching in specific regions of the body is due to a variety of conditions that may be connected with that area or region of the body. Therefore the cause is the presence of constipation, fissures, or hemorrhoids or even worms in the body if the itching is in the genital region of the body. Itching in the genital region of many women may be due to a vaginal yeast infection, however in such cases, trichomoniasis and other sexually transmitted diseases should be ruled out as possible causes. In many people and especially in those over the age of sixty years the presence of itching is an early symptom of shingles caused by the herpes zoster virus. The deficiency of B vitamins, and biotin in particular may manifest itself in the body through an itching sensation, itchy skin can also develop due the deficiency of the vitamin A, minerals like iron, selenium and silicon. Itching is also caused due to the depletion of zinc, the lack of essential fatty acids in the body and due to depleted reserves of the vitamin E. Psychological and emotional states may also generate the need or the urge to itch in the body, problems such as stress, the misuse of drugs and other medications, tobacco and alcohol are also leading reasons for the coming of an itchy sensation.

Supplements and herbs

For the maintenance of an elastic skin and for the rejuvenation of the skin, the body needs the vitamins such as the A and E oil soluble group. With particular regard to the elderly, with dry and itchy skin, the vitamin E is most beneficial as a supplement. If there is not reduction in the itching sensation in the skin even after a regimen of the A and E vitamins, the B complex vitamins can be included in the supplement. The nervous system fights off a number of infections of the skin making use of the B vitamins in the body. The beneficial bacterial content in the body can be supplemented using a supplement of the Lactobacillus acidophilus in capsule form, this supplement is also essential for digestion and the immune system which is the main defense in the fight against infection. The depletion of beneficial bacteria in the body comes about when antibiotics are used, and in such cases supplements using Lactobacillus acidophilus are immensely useful. Topical applications can rid the itching caused by a fungal infection, a practically odorless anti fungal ointment can be made from the seed extracts of the grapefruit, which will relieve the itching. The over multiplication of the flora in the gastrointestinal tract is brought about by the advent of conditions such as constipation in the body. The persistent itching that comes about due to this overpopulation can be alleviated using cultured dairy products such as yogurt or kefir combined with digestive enzymes and the Lactobacillus acidophilus bacterial supplement.

It is important to search for, identify and deal with the basis of the itching in the body, in the bid to rid the body of itchy sensations, since the itch may due to a malfunction of the hormonal glands, due to kidney and liver disorders. Equally skin conditions such as eczema, disorders of the metabolic process such as diabetes, the presence of chronic constipation, worms or general nervous tension can all cause itching. For example a liver problem is usually manifested in the persistent and unbearable itchiness in the body.

Detoxification and cleansing of the organs using a tbsp. of the juice of black radish with a tbsp. of crushed flax seed soaked in half a glass of water, milk or buttermilk can be utilized to combat the itching caused by a disorder in the liver or the gall bladder. For a period of six to ten days, this can be drunk to ward off the itching sensation. A tea made form the stinging nettle can be drunk for relief from general itchiness in the body. Nervous system originated sensations of itching can be relieved using the vervain herbs. This can be taken thrice a day, drunk as tea as a tincture with a tbsp. in water. The silica contents of the horsetail herb aids malnourished skins and can greatly relieve the symptoms of the itch. This herb can be used in bath water by adding a qt. of strong horsetail tea to water; it can alternately be used in capsule or tea form for ingestion. To topically ease the itchy sensations in an area, an application or salve can be made from the calendula herb. For relief form itchiness in the body herbs such as the horsetail, chamomile and peppermint, or oat straw can be mixed in bath water. As a topical application the anesthetic function of diluted peppermint oil is well known and this can be used to rid oneself of the itchy sensation.

Homeopathy

The nature of the condition and the severity of the itching should dictate the use of the homeopathic remedies given below. Until the itching subsides, the homeopathic treatment below must be taken every hour in all cases of severe itching and discomfort. Dosage must be of 30c once a day in chronic conditions, the effect can be confidently realized in a few days time under regular treatment.

  • Arsenicum
    Arsenicum is to be used as a homeopathic treatment in all persons who have a burning, crawling or tickling sensation on the skin along with the itch. In such people the itchy region worsens and scratching the affected part may result in pain. Along with the itching arsenicum can be used for eczema and psoriasis like skin conditions, it can also be used to soothe the results of hives in the body, to alleviate the effects of dandruff and seborrhea. And it is also used in the forms of herpes without skin eruptions. In such people medications and creams may suppress the eruptions on the skin, but the itching persist even after that. The rough and extremely dry skin is uncomfortable and the patient may keep scratching it till blood oozes out. Psychologically the person may display anxiety, and can be temperamental and exacting, and will feel weak and restless even though feeling very cold in the body. The person worsens in the night, especially after midnight and in cold weather. He or she may show some improvement if hot compress is used as a topical application.
  • Psorinum
    Psorinum is to be prescribed to all people with a stinging form of itchiness, rashes and welts may form and all types of eruptions on the skin appear with the itch, after soothing the rashes on the skin. The itch is so bad that the person may not get enough sleep, and will be scratching the skin till it becomes raw or bleeds. There may be a foul odor on the skin, and it will look very dirty. This condition may persist for a long time, and there is very little reaction to treatment, it can also be due to the presence in the person of lingering illness or infection. Before the onset of itchiness, the person may have pangs of hunger gnawing at him. Emotionally the person's outlook is desperate and gloomy. The patient will worsen when exposed to cold air, after bathing with cold water, from the warmth of the bed, on using woolens, during storms and before midnight. The persons condition improves after exposure to heat and when allowed to perspire freely.
  • Sulphur
    Sulphur is to be used as a treatment in people where a burning sensation accompanies the itch, the skin is hot and red, and the person may have an insatiable desire to scratch the skin until bleeding occurs. The person may experience flushes of heat and a localized throbbing in the affected area. The skin is prone to infections, is liable to get rashes frequently and is other wise very unhealthy. The physical signs are the drying of the skin, a great sensitivity to cold air, and to cold wind and bathing with cold water. The person may also become emaciated and thin. This condition usually affects dreamers and intellectuals. Psychologically the person may display traits such as irritability and selfishness, he or she is also very critical and feels lethargic at most times. The person worsens around 11 a.m., and at night, when exposed to warm air, dislikes bathing, cannot rest but hates exerting himself or herself at the same time.

Additional things you may do

The itchy sensation in the person may be relieved using bath water containing sulfur. Another topical solution is use concentrated liquid whey by soaking cotton balls in it, this can be applied onto the itchy areas of the body for relief.

Usual dosage

  • Grapefruit seed extract, three capsules thrice a day.
  • Vitamin A, 25,000 IU (avoid use during pregnancy).
  • Vitamin B complex, three tbsp or 100 mg.
  • Vitamin E, with mixed tocopherols, 400 IU.
  • Digestive enzymes, two capsules.
  • Lactobacillus acidophilus, one tsp. or three capsules.

Other beneficial herbs

Comments

From Carrie - Jun-07-2013
What I find most helpful for allergies is taking 4 capsules of quercetin & bromelain along with vitamin C (in divided doses 6,000mg) and if there is redness or rash of any sort make sure you take fish oil.
From Carla - Apr-09-2011
Itching / psoriasis can also come about due to vitamin D deficiency.
From Jon - 2010
Cayenne (Capsaicin) works very well against itching. Drunk/eaten for the whole body. Takes about 30 minutes to work, depending on how much you take. Or topically. Topically it is also effective and practical against skin conditions like acne and psoriases if you leave it or use a stronger species on since it doesn't smell much and the ingredient isn't water soluble. Hurts on mucus membranes though.
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