What came first?
The chicken or the egg? mmmmm
If you have had Eczema - what came first - The Itch or the Scratch?
The itch/scratch response is an interesting thing when you think about it.
Your skin reacts to an allergen.
A histamine response is set off by your body, and the histamine itself is often the cause of the itching.
A lot of research has been done on the itch/scratch response.
Your skin feels itchy and then you scratch it. What part of your brain is controlling that? Is it an emotional response? Is it worse some times rather then others? Does stress effect it? When do you itch? Do you itch around others?
I know I used to be just about jumping out of my skin at night time, and would nearly scream if my husband dared to say "just don't itch"...!!! Don't worry he learnt very quickly not to say that!
Interesting research has been carried out with people regarding the itch/scratch response with behavioural therapy.
With this system the particapants were encouraged to keep a clicker to record when they scratched
They were also instructed to clench their fists when they felt like scratching as it apparently induces the same feelings in the body.
If the itch was unbearable they were then encouraged to pinch the area, but not to scratch it.
I know...I really do KNOW! That itching is soooo good....however we want to encourage the skin to heal and part of that is avoiding that itch.
I used to find that having a hot shower and then applying moisturiser (a good one with anti-tich properties like Gilly's Balm) really helped.
Applying ice cold packs sometimes helped.
Some suggest using oral anti-histamines to help alleviate the itch. Personally, this didn't help me, and it made me feel groggy and tired.
What has helped you to avoid the scratch part of the itch/scratch cycle?
To download the free e-book My Eczema Journey visit www.eczemabalm.com