Normally you will see only two types of itchiness; the first one will manifest in changes to the skin in the itchy spots. The changes could be anything like dryness, bumps or scaly skin. The second type will not display changes on the skin as it will appear as if everything is normal, and yet the itch will be present. Those are the signs that will allow you to tell if a problem is actually external or internal.
Causes of Itchy Skin at Night
1. External Causes
External factors refer to those that would not indicate that there is a problem with your health. When you think of an external factor you must think of the environment around you and the changes that have taken place which could have triggered your itchy skin. Here are some of the most common external causes.
- Insect Bites. Insect and bed bugs can also be the reason behind your itchy skin. You will be able to tell if that is the problem because you will get bumps in the area. Besides bed bugs you could also have a tick or flea problem, especially if your pets sleep in the same bed with you. Check for insects and bugs on your pets and bedding.
- Hot Showers. Skin can get dry when exposed to high temperatures and a very hot shower could be the reason for it. Hot water washes away skin oils leaving it dry which is a common reason for itchy skin. Hard water can also be the cause, so if you have moved to a new area then there is a possibility that the water supply is different. Cold showers could help especially if you use a mild soap and moisturizer.
- Allergic Reactions. As mentioned earlier, a change in your routine or lifestyle could be the reason for the itchy skin and that usually means allergies. Think of the changes that you made at the same time the itchiness started; anything from foods to medication could have triggered the condition. Even the sheets on your bed could be made of a material you are allergic to, but didn’t know yet. Your doctor will ask you a lot of questions so try to really think of the answers.
2. Internal Causes
Some of the internal causes have more to do with your health. When that is the case the itching can actually become very intense especially at night. It is important that you check the source of the itchy skin as some conditions that can cause it are fatal if not treated.
- Thyroid Disease. If your thyroid glands are producing more hormones it can lead to itchy skin, and a condition known as hyperthyroidism. The condition is the result of Graves’ disease in which a patients experiences thickening of the skin. The area will change to a red color and it will be itchy and hard.
- Kidney Failure. Kidney failure is very dangerous so itchy skin should be a sign to visit your doctor. The itching happens because there are low levels of calcium but high levels of phosphorus in the blood.
- Liver Disorders. The itching can be a result of liver disorders that happen when the bile acids produced by the liver stay in your blood and then end up on the surface of your skin. The itchiness gets worse at night.
- Menopause. In women, menopause can lead to itchy skin; that is because of the hormonal changes that a woman experiences during menopause especially the lower levels of estrogen. Estrogen regulates the skin’s moisture so without it the skin becomes dry.
- Fungal Infections. Fungal infections are experienced in many different ways including jock itch, athlete’s foot, pinworms infestation, swimmers itch and other fungal infections.
- Cancer. Lymphoma and leukemia are known to cause itchy skin in some patients and it can in fact be one of the first symptoms. Usually the lower legs are the most affected by the itching, but it can spread through the body.
- Others. Other problems include skin disorders, STDs, anemia, hemorrhoids, anxiety, stress, diabetes, pregnancy, shingles, etc.
Remedies for Itchy Skin at Night
1. Prevent Dryness
Some of the best remedies for itchy skin include using moisturizer to prevent dryness and also avoid the hot showers especially at night. Your showers should range from cool to lukewarm and oatmeal powders can do wonders for itchy skin. Since hot temperatures can cause itching. It is also recommended that you use sun block if you will be outside.
2. Avoid Scratching’
Try to not scratch too much because if you have a bacterial infection you could break the skin. Try to scratch with your fingertips as opposed to your finger nails.
3. Use Cinder Vinegar
Cider vinegar is a great home remedy for itching due to its antiseptic and antifungal properties. Wet some cotton with the vinegar and rub it on the itchy spot. If the itching has spread, then use two cups of vinegar in your bath water and soak for a half hour.
4. Apply Cold Compress
Finally you can use cold compress on the affected area to reduce the itchiness. The cold will make you feel better while at the same time reduce irritation.