Itchy skin can be an incredibly unpleasant condition that sometimes can only be relieved by scratching. In winter months, the cold air can be the culprit. And when the weather warms up, added heat can also cause an increase in itchiness. If you happen to suffer from itchy skin on your stomach in particular, there are several things that could be causing it. Most just cause discomfort, but some can be dangerous.
Dry skin is often the cause of an itchy stomach (via Healthline). In many parts of the world, cold winter air doesn’t hold much water and can zap skin of its natural moisture. Summer sunshine and higher temperatures lead to excess sweat that can get trapped beneath clothing, causing itchy rashes. Soaps can be especially drying to skin, and the lotions used to combat the dryness may actually cause a reaction, especially if you are sensitive to any of the chemicals they contain.
Contact dermatitis, a condition where skin touches something that irritates it, can also be the culprit of an itchy stomach (via Medical News Today). Contact with metal jewelry, buttons on pants, and detergents used to wash clothing can all cause this unpleasant condition. The root cause of contact dermatitis is eczema, a non-contagious skin condition that causes dry, flaky skin. Psoriasis may also be the cause of itchy, flaky skin on your stomach.
Pay close attention if you're pregnant
If you’re pregnant, there can be a number of causes for your itchy belly, including stretching skin and new chemicals in your blood. According to Healthline, the stretching of the skin during late pregnancy can cause an uncomfortable condition called pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy, or PUPPP rash. But as Medical News Today notes, a buildup of bile from your liver can cause a dangerous condition called cholestasis of pregnancy that’s not to be ignored. While itching from cholestasis most commonly occurs on the hands and feet, itching anywhere accompanied by dark urine, jaundice, and other symptoms should be checked out by a doctor immediately.
Keeping itchy stomachs at bay can sometimes be as simple as avoiding very hot baths and showers and using soaps and lotions that are free of fragrance. Wearing loose-fitting clothing can also help you avoid contact dermatitis or itching caused by excess sweat. Asking a doctor for help might be a good idea If your itching is disruptive to your life or shows up with other unusual symptoms.
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