Antibitch where are you

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We respect your privacy. All addresses you provide will be used just for sending this story. Itching can drive you a little crazy—messing with your sleep, stealing your concentration, and leaving you wishing you could step out of your skin. A bit of gentle scratching to tame the uncomfortable sensation is fine. But if you find yourself scratching to the point of distraction or so much that you're damaging your skin—which can allow bacteria in—you may be on the lookout for strategies to stop the itch.

These creams, gels, and lotions can be very effective, says Gil Yosipovitch, MD, professor of dermatology and Stiefel chair of medical dermatology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine—provided you choose the right product for your particular itching problem and follow label directions. With these, it's easy to pinpoint the problem.

But other causes of itching may not be so obvious.

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Fungal infections and contact allergies the usually short-lived rashy reactions some people have from substances such as cosmetics or certain fabrics or metals are common in warmer weather. And though dry skin is a far more frequent problem in the winter months, it can crop up now as well. If you're unsure why you're itching or you're extremely uncomfortable—unable to sleep through the night because of the need to scratch, for instance—check in with your doctor. For other problems, keeping itchy skin cool could ease the urge to scratch a little, Yosipovitch says.

Turn on a fan or air conditioning in hot weather or sleep with your itchy body part outside the covers at night, for instance. And no matter what's behind the itch, using a gentle, fragrance-free moisturizer look for lanolin, or glycerin, petrolatum, or a combination of these on the label two to three times a day could help. If it's simple dryness causing your itch, use soaps and body washes that are mild, unscented, and free of alcohol.

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Because soap and water can wash away protective skin-surface oils, keep baths and showers short, and use tepid water. Moisturize afterward, while skin is still slightly damp. Skip long, hot showers and large amounts of soap. Both can dry your skin, leading to itching, Krant says. Skip hydrocortisone for itching around your toes or in your vaginal area or groin, which might be caused by a fungal infection. Calamine: Old-fashioned calamine lotion, found in products such as Caladryl Skin Protectant Lotion and generics, is less ubiquitous than hydrocortisone.

But this mixture of zinc oxide and ferric oxide is very effective for relieving itch and drying out blistery rashes such as poison ivy, oak, and sumac, Lerner says. It can also help with insect bites and stings. Diphenhydramine: Itch creams, gels, and sprays containing this antihistamine, such as Benadryl Extra Strength Itch Stopping Cream and generics, work by blocking the itchy effects of histamine, a compound produced in the skin during an allergic reaction.

Topical diphenhydramine is sometimes recommended for short-term relief from itches related to bug bite or hives, but both Lerner and Yosipovitch caution that it can irritate skin and that some people are allergic to it. And don't use other diphenhydramine products, including pills, while using a skin product containing this anti-itch ingredient. Diphenhydramine is not a good choice for chronic itching, such as that caused by psoriasis, eczema, shingles, nerve damage neuropathyor other medical conditions. Pramoxine: This mild anesthetic is often added to anti-itch products that also contain hydrocortisone or other active ingredients, such as Aveeno Anti-Itch Concentrated Lotion which also contains calamineCeraVe Itch Relief Moisturizing Lotion, Gold Bond Medicated Anti-Itch Lotion which also contains mentholand generics.

Menthol: This minty ingredient, found in products such as Eucerin Calming Itch-Relief Treatment and generics, activates nerve fibers that send cool, icy sensations Antibitch where are you the brain, distracting you from the itch, Yosipovitch says. They may aggravate itching. Capsaicin: If your itching is caused by neuropathy —nerve damage often related to diabetes—then this chili-pepper ingredient could help, Yosipovitch says.

Be patient and be careful, he advises. It may take several days to notice an improvement. Sari Harrar is an award-winning freelance journalist and regular contributor to Consumer Reports On Health and Consumer Reports on topics of health, medicine, and science. In. Become a Member.

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Remember Me. Forgot username or password? Not a member? Need further assistance? Please call Member Services at When and how to use drugstore anti-itch creams. By Sari Harrar. Last updated: June 13, Sharing is Nice Yes, send me a copy of this. Send We respect your privacy. Oops, we messed up. Try again later. When you shop through retailer links on our site, we may earn affiliate commissions. Learn more.

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Photo: Getty Images. More on Skin Care. Many people turn to one of the over-the-counter topical anti-itch products on drugstore shelves. Pick the Right Product Here, the active ingredients you're likely to see on labels and how to choose wisely. Sari Harrar Sari Harrar is an award-winning freelance journalist and regular contributor to Consumer Reports On Health and Consumer Reports on topics of health, medicine, and science. More From Consumer Reports. Show comments commenting powered by Facebook.

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Antibitch where are you

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The 10 Best Anti-Itch Creams, According to Dermatologists