- Itching in Pregnancy
- Getting Rid-of Itching During Pregnancy
- Can the Strong Itching Without the Rash Indicate the Problem?
- Itch Prevention During Pregnancy
Itching in Pregnancy
Many women are familiar with the unpleasant state, when the whole body is unbearably itching. Such condition during pregnancy appears at any stage – with different intensity, accompanied by a skin rash. You cannot tolerate this state, because it can be a warning signal that the body goes through a serious process, threatening the health of the expectant mother and the baby. Firstly, you need to find out what caused the itching, because the methods of treatment and consequences will depend on that.
Causes Itching During Pregnancy
If a pregnant woman has stomach and chest itching, this is quite a natural process. An increase of body parts and stretching skin are the causes of this process. The doctors call it very sternly – "polymorphic dermatosis pregnant", although it is one of the most innocuous and natural causes of this phenomenon.
However, the cases can be different. The doctors are warning that itching may be dictated by other factors, which pose a potential threat to the mother and child. Consequently, you need to find out what is the origin of the itching of the skin as quickly as possible.
- The itching can be a symptom of serious diseases such as liver disease, cholecystitis, hepatitis, or pancreatitis. This condition is called cholestasis, and it requires immediate treatment. In these cases, itching may spread not only in the stomach and chest, but also to other parts of the body – arms, back, legs. The risk group includes those who have been ill with hepatitis A, cholelithiasis or chronic cholecystitis before pregnancy, bears several babies and is over 35 years.
- If the itching of the skin during pregnancy is accompanied by a rash, resembling an allergic reaction or teenage acne, it could be because it is allergic to cosmetics, clothing, food, dust, flowers, etc. If a woman does not eliminate the allergen, she will not get rid of itching.
- One of the reasons is the increase in the amount of estrogen in the body of a pregnant woman: these hormonal changes will not affect the mother and baby: she just has to endure severe itching, and it will disappear after birth.
- The skin diseases (eczema or scabies) cannot be excluded from the list of causes. This itching and rashes often appear in skin folds – behind the knees, in the folds of the elbows, under the arms, on the neck. In this case, you need to be treated by a dermatologist.
- If severe burning and itching are felt in the genitals, it can be bacterial vaginosis or a yeast infection (how to identify it, read here). It is necessarily recommended to treat such diseases before giving birth.
This phenomenon may exist because of serious and dangerous illness, so the pregnant women should immediately consult a doctor when the first symptoms appear. If she starts the treatment on time, she will avoid complications.
Getting Rid-of Itching During Pregnancy
The first thing to get the right treatment of itching is to inform your doctor. After a thorough inspection of the affected places, a gynecologist will give you further direction to pass the necessary tests. If you suspect the cholestasis, the biochemistry of blood is made, the liver samples are taken, and ultrasound of the abdominal cavity is done. If the causes of pruritus are serious and dangerous to the health of the woman and the child, the treatment course is assigned. If it is just a natural process, you are able to eliminate discomfort.
- Review your diet: eliminate heavy food, which is unhealthy for your liver. This food is fried, salty, spicy, or seafood and exotic fruits, which could become the unwitting causes of allergies. Increase your daily intake of prunes and dried apricots, which will establish the intestinal peristalsis.
- Make sure that your body is always clean: follow basic rules of hygiene. If the tap water is poor, you must put the filters. Use only anti-allergenic agents (available for children) while taking a shower.
- The itching can be removed by using a proper cream. It should be moisturizing, odorless, neutral. Nowadays you can find a special line of goods for pregnant women – try to use them. You can also use an ordinary children's cream or natural extra virgin olive oil.
- Keep track of drinking regime. If you do not have swelling in the feet, drink up to two liters of liquid per day.
- Let the skin "breathe" – walk outside more often and ventilate the room.
- Itching may be enhanced due to the synthetic underwear. It is better to choose large, not tight, breathable clothes made of natural fabrics.
- Take a bath with herbs (but only after consultation with your doctor): broth succession, calendula and chamomile are very useful for your skin.
- If itching is local and has a specific location, you can do antipruritic, anti-inflammatory and disinfectant packs and masks made of oatmeal, soaked in milk or herbal teas.
- Avoid overheating: wash the face with cool water. The bath should be barely warm. The sunburn and sunbathing are prohibited.
- Distract from the itching: it is the only way to forget it, not combing the affected places.
Itching during pregnancy is one of the most unpleasant feelings that overshadow the happy state of future mothers. If you do not have hepatic pathologies, do not worry – the itch will not affect the baby. Treat your disease, resort to folk methods, consult with your doctor and do not forget to enjoy your life, because only your calmness and your patience may be a guarantee of having a healthy baby.
Can the Strong Itching Without the Rash Indicate the Problem?
The intense skin itching in pregnancy that occurs in the second or third trimester may be the sign of intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy (ICP), the liver disorder that affect about 1% of pregnant women.
When the bile fails to travel along small ducts to the liver, bile salts accumulate in the skin resulting in the itch. Most often, feet and palms start to itch first though some women claim to suffer from itching over the whole body. As a rule, the itching is too intensive and it aggravates at night.
At first glance, the skin itching is the only sign for this disease. This condition does not normally cause the rash but you may see some redness or skin irritation with minor cracks. Some women complain on the loss of appetite, moderate nausea, and general discomfort. In some cases, the moderate jaundice develops in a woman.
Cholestasis is quite dangerous not only for you but for the fetus! So, you suspect to develop the ICP or you suffer from the strong skin itching of unknown origin, seek the medical help! You will be at all times required o have your blood checked to set the diagnosis.
Itch Prevention During Pregnancy
Pregnancy itching may be avoided provided that you follow advices and recommendations of health care providers.
First of all, the itching prevention during pregnancy are aimed to strict compliance with the pregnancy hygiene and improvement of the life style. The following preventive recommendations may be noted that will help future mothers to prevent or get rid of the skin itching that develop during the pregnancy.
- Keep the personal hygiene all the time, take showers or warm bath without any decorated cleaning agents.
- Keep the groin dry and clean.
- Stop using cosmetic and perfumed products.
- Use the phosphate-free detergent of neutral action to wash your clothes.
- Wear clothes of natural and water-absorbing material only that should not restrict the volume of movements.
- Use moisturizing agents (cream, lotion, gel, oil) with neutral pH for sensitive skin.
- Avoid going out when it is too hot, avoid close areas, wind and strong sun.
- Drink adequate volume of water to maintain the best skin balance.
- Keep to an individual diet.
- Do not apply for self-treatment. If you have the itch, seek for the help at the specialized health care facility and have the doctor’s consultation.
Itching during pregnancy is not likely if a woman is regularly examined and checks her blood for latent infections prior to pregnancy planning. It is also important to get consulting by the narrow-focused health professionals to identify potential chronic diseases and to treat them, if any, prior to fetation.