Someone I know had a situation where they were asking me how I dealt with skin rashes and itching because they have a son that is dealing with it. Another friend of mine was also discussing this issue with me the other day.
Since I've been through this, I wanted to write a blog post detailing more of it as a summary. I have written other things in the past which you can find here in regards to itching and skin rashes.
Often with skin rashes and itching, there is some trigger or emotional stressor that is coming up. It could be anything from past experiences and trauma to something related to food or other current situations. The stressor brings it on, regardless of what it is.
Attack it on all fronts...
You need to attack a skin rash and itching on all fronts for the best relief. Don't discount the build up of daily stress or triggers to past situations you don't even think of as being a cause of something showing up. It may seem like it is totally unrelated or you may not even put the puzzle pieces together. Sometimes when it has shown up in me, I can go to the root cause and story and other times, it is just one of those things I don't understand.
I learned that most over-the-counter products for skin soothing and irritations did not work for me. They made it much worse. I'm sorry to all the corporations that think they have the cure-all, but when I tried various products, I could not wait to get that stuff off of me fast enough. Most of it made things worse!
Caffeine, warm drinks, and sugar often aggravate my situation. Using too much hot water in a shower or bath can sometimes make it worse by bringing on the itching after you've dried off. Drying off too vigorously can also cause ongoing irritation. Clothing can be horrible to have to deal with especially if you live in a colder climate. The lighter nonrestrictive clothing that you can wear, the easier it is. Clothing didn't feel god when the itching was at its full strength.
I used oatmeal baths when things got so bad that I could just not take it. It would help soothe it and keep me from scratching my skin completely off. Go to the following link, if you would like to know how to create the oatmeal bath like I did. It was a lifesaver. It got me through some pretty horrific moments.
At times when the pain would get too much, I used ice water and tried to put my foot or whatever the body part was in the ice water. This is no fun of course and it was not easy to do this. After a few minutes using an ice bath, you're begging for mercy. However, it does work. The cold was not easy but it got to where I had no choice. I needed relief from the itching, swelling and pain. An ice pack might also help, but I'm not sure in my case if I could have applied it to the affected area.
Another item I found helpful was a product called, "Silver Gel". This stuff helped me so much and I don't know how I would have made it without it. It seems to start giving some soothing relief within minutes of being applied. Yes, I know that I said most over-the-counter products didn't work, but this is the exception. There is also a silver bath soap that I have used to help my own situation.
I also learned to take showers and baths that didn't use water that was as HOT as I normally would have taken it. I've seen conflicting information on this, but from what I understand, the very hot water tends to open the skin pores up and draws out the moisturizing part of it. I love my hot water showers, but I learned to turn it down just a little bit. Then I would try to end the shower with cooler water and that seemed to help my skin from losing moisturizing.
The other thing I had to deal with when this showed up was the "FEAR" of it. Just seeing my skin the way it was would change, freaked me out. The ongoing battle left me feeling drained and so I had to deal with the emotional turmoil that it would create. Trying to keep in mind that "this too shall pass" was sometimes a comfort to me.
One thing that I find helpful when the itching picks up is if I can lightly caress an area of my body, then sometimes I get soothing relief relatively quickly from the anxiety. If I woke up in the middle of the night with the itching, I found slightly caressing my leg would help bring a calmness to me and I could fall back to sleep. The lightest touch and slow gentle movements in the way a mother would calm her child seems to help. You have to experiment around and play with the concept to find out how this works best for you. I know this idea may sound silly, but it does work. I'm not sure if it helps the brain release some endorphins or what, but if you can experiment and find the right spot and right way to do this for yourself, it might bring some temporary relief.
The best thing you can do is try to attack the situation on all fronts. Soothing relief is a must because if you're suffering from skin rashes and irritations, you know fully how difficult it gets. Working to identify and release the stressors in life is the key. Learning to get to the root of what is causing will help. However, I know firsthand that this is not easy to do.
Blog Post And Images (c) 2016 by Don Shetterly
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