Can’t Stop Scratching: Relief for Itchy Eczema

Woman scratching her backIf you have eczema, you might have heard the advice “don’t scratch” or “stop scratching” a thousand times. The problem is this rarely works and can only leave you feeling frustrated. Also, those who give this advice probably don’t know or understand how eczema feels like. The itch can become uncontrollable and scratching may seem like the only thing that can suppress it.

While scratching can offer a short-term relief, it can actually harm the skin. This is especially true if you can’t stop scratching until the rash bleeds. Dermatology centers in Salem note that can make your skin more prone to infection, as bacteria can easily invade a cracked or a wounded skin. It may impossible to just stop scratching, but you may try these strategies to dampen down the itch and get some relief.

Cool The Skin

Make a cool compress by wetting a clean washcloth or towel using cold water. You can also use an ice pack or a bag of frozen vegetable to stop the feeling of itchiness. Be sure to apply moisturizer after removing the compress.

Skip Hot Showers

While a hot shower may feel good and relaxing, it can actually worsen your eczema. It is best to use lukewarm water, along with a mild and unscented soap. Pat your skin dry after showering and apply moisturizer. You can also stop the itch by soaking in a lukewarm bath for 15 minutes.

Use a Thick Moisturizer

Skip thin lotions and regular creams when looking for a moisturizer for your eczema. Look for products with skin repair label or those with ceramides. You can also use petroleum jelly, which provides more relief than many lotions and creams.

Keep Your Hands Busy

As scratching can easily become a habit, you might do it even if your skin doesn’t feel itchy. This is why you should try something else to do with your hands to break the cycle. You can engage in art and crafts, adult coloring books, or use a stress-relief ball.

Pinch Skin or Tap Near the Itchy Skin

A gentle pinch near the itch area can offer some relief by reducing the itch. You can also gently tap near the area that feels itchy to reduce the feeling of itchiness.

Try Relaxation Techniques

Studies suggest that stress can cause eczema flare-ups and make the rash feel itchier. Try relaxation techniques like deep breathing or use a stress management app. You can also find other ways to reduce your stress.

It is not easy to stop scratching. You can try the techniques mentioned about or talk to your dermatologist about your other skin and eczema concerns.

Tags: × ×