Have an itch? Try not to scratch it. Then pay close attention as the itching sensation becomes even greater, almost painful, and completely unbearable. What if this itching sensation was not a momentary, passing discomfort? What if the itching were chronic and lasted throughout the night, to the point that you were unable to sleep or feel relaxed for even a matter of seconds? Chronic itch is a dilemma that many people face on a daily basis, including those with skin disorders and conditions such as eczema, as well as those patients with kidney failure or liver disease. Oftentimes, the chronic itching can actually be caused by painkillers used in conjunction with treatments for serious conditions such as cancer.
Researchers at the University of Washington School of Medicine have discovered the gene linked to itchiness, which may lead to further breakthroughs in alleviating the discomfort experienced by those plagued with chronic itch. This gene, GRPR, is associated with both itch and pain, and more research could determine how to curb itching while not interfering with the body’s detection and response to pain. Antihistamine drugs work for itchiness associated with insect bites and other allergies, but many other maladies are not related to histamines, and thus cannot be treated with these drugs. New research has found that drugs that block opioid receptors in the brain can often curb itchiness in some patients with the likes of kidney failure and liver disease.
In the past, a majority of scientific research focused on the experience of pain and overlooked the lesser malady of itch. However, many people suffering from chronic itch are dealing with an excruciating amount of discomfort. Broken skin emerges and becomes infected by persistent scratching. Sleep becomes an impossibility. Discovering what aspects contribute to itch can lead many people to find some peace within their itchy battle. For the rest of us, a few simple scratches in the center of the back can often release a brief yet extraordinary amount of pleasure.
|Peaceful Mountain – Eczederm Rescue – 1 oz.|
|King Bio – Homeopathic Natural Medicine Skin Irritations & Itch Relief – 2 oz.|