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Itchy Exercise

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I'm looking for suggestions ...

Whenever I exercise, I get very itchy under my skin.  It doesn't have much to do with sweating, or rubbing together (e.g. my shins and forearms itch too!). The itch is under the skin (so it's not "dry skin" or anything like that).  It happens even when I'm just walking, so it's with any type or level of exercise (right now I just walked 40 minutes and even my ears itch!)

Other than taking antihistamines - I try to keep my body as drug-free as possible, and I'd pretty much have to take them every day - has anyone dealt with this in a healthy way?  Do anti-itch creams work for this?

I find this keeps me from exercising as much as I should, as the itching is sometimes unbearable and lasts for up to 1/2 an hour after I stop.  It's hard to run and scratch at the same time!

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It is probably just sweat, sweat can make you itchy, so can fabric softeners if you use them in your clothes or detergents (you are hot and wet so it might make a difference in excercise clothes).
I get itchy like that ALL THE TIME!  I look like a freak on the elliptical trying to scratch behind my knees! I think it's a body temperature change thing though.  I went on the MS walk yesterday and it was cold outside, but my legs were warm and all of the sudden the itching started.  I don't think it's unhealthy, I think it's just the tingling sensation you get from you blood vessels coming closer to the surface of the skin to help you body cool down. 

Do you tan?  They have "tingle" lotion which purposely makes your blood vessels come closer to the skin because it makes you skin go pink and darkers, so you have a better bade for tanning.  The lotion makes you tingle and itch like crazy, and I think the same thing is happening when we work out.
My son gets this way.  Whenever he's running around and then stops, he scratches and itches his head like crazy.  I finally figured out that it was his sweat by watching him and seeing when he was itching.  

So has anyone found a remedy to this itch? My dad (and me to an extent) suffer from exactly the same thing.

Best of luck
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This has been happening to me since I was 14, (33 now) anytime I jog, walk fast, walk the dog, hike downhill (only downhill), and on my arms when mountain biking on bumpy ground. The itching has been so bad at times I felt I was going to go crazy! Sometimes would get hives after scratching, sometimes my throat would get itchy. Went to an allergy specialist because I have super dry, sensitive skin as well, he couldn't diagnose it, (and also kinda looked at me like I was crazy) only prescribed allergy meds and special skin cream. Ive been taking allegra for 6 years now and as long as im faithfully taking it, this doesn't happen, but the minute I miss a pill - boy im in trouble. Im active and dont have any other health problems besides allergies. Im assuming it is a type of allergy since the allegra works. But who wants to be on allegra the rest of their life??


there have been threads about this here before. you're not alone. i experience this when i run or walk for more than 1.5 miles if i've gone a few months without walking or running. i don't think it's skin-related or allergy-related since it's such a deep, internal itching sensation; i believe it's related to circulation & hydration. in my experience it's worse with running than walking, and worse in the cold weather than it is during summer. the blood vessel explanation above makes the most sense to me based on how it feels.

the only thing that helps me is building up endurance gradually. i time my exercise to last a little longer each session. i find the itching starts at 1.5 miles into my walk, but after i do more walking for a couple of weeks, the itching is gone and i can do 3+ miles with no itching at all.

whatever you do, don't scratch. it doesn't help. i've left bruises and scratches on my legs from scratching but the itch just needs time to subside. rubbing/massage & stretching helps alleviate it a little.
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Hey, i've also suffered from this weird thing for my whole life it seems. I'm 20 now and i've tried lots of things to stop it but nothing completely works. I kind of had a thought it could be a mental state as there have never been any common factors that seem to make the itching flare up. I mainly get it in my ankles, feet and toes. (although if i wear a backpack, or satchel, it itches like crazy where they rub against my skin) I went to my GP a few times, but the guy looked at me like I was an invalid (as if he knows everything!) I've come to realise that modern medicine only caters for the most mainstream of ailments, the rest you have to work out yourself!

Things that have helped to quell the itching include rubbing cool lotion (Palmers Coco Butter Formula) on areas prone to itching before going on walks. Drinking a glass or two of water before going out. Checking your washing detergent (sometimes when i wear freshly washed socks my feet actually throb from the itching :S) and making sure to choose a brand that doesn't aggravate it. And when walking, if it itches DON'T scratch! Just try and sit or stand still until it goes on its own, it can be daunting but i think small victories help your mind adjust to the fact that you can control it if you really want to! hope it gets better for you...

Are you allergic to your laundry soap? 
Try a hyperallergic soap, like a baby soap for a month and no fabric softener of any kind.
It is only for a month and if you are still itching then you can go back to your old soap.
 You are probably suffering from a normal occurance of blood flowing to the surface of the skin. If you run and don't have enough oxygen your muscles will glow red, usually from being unconditioned. This occurance can cause vessles to the surface of the skin and cause itching. A hot bath or shower should help after working out. I read the other posts and disagree that its an alergic reaction to soaps or a rare african disease that will make your limbs fall off. Soaps tend to cause rashes if they are too stringent or left onto cloths. If it persists. see a doctor. Online help is simply suggestions and nice folks making guesses. Now do you have any enemies that practice Voo Doo? Cheers
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I hate that you are going through that....but man I'm glad to know that there is someone out there going through the same exact thing as I. I've been to the dermatologist and they looked at me like I was crazy and said they didn't know what I was talking about and that they have never heard of it before. Like you said it has nothing to do with dry skin or sweating. Although, I do itch if my thighs rub together. But, again like you said any level of exercise makes me itch and it's under the skin. It's so deep you can't even scratch it. I itch on my arms, hands, and my butt on down to my feet...escpecially in cold weather! Oh, my GOD! It is rediculous! It's been like this every since elementary school. Man, if I walk from Walmart to my car in the parking lot I'm itching like crazy. Sometimes I have to run to the car(which really makes it worse, but, I have to endure it) so that I can scratch!It's too embarassing to scratch in public. As soon as I get in the car I pull my pants down and go at it. God forbid I walk at the mall... especially with some kind of heels on. FrownThis is also affecting my sex life. I can't even back it up to my husband cause it makes my butt itch so bad! Even scrubbing a spot on the carpet makes my arms itch. Listen, I don't know what this condition is...but, can someone please let us know so that maybe we will find someone with a cure.    Thanks. T

Yeah i have the same problem. I've been to the doctor and neurologist and it just ended up to be a waist of time. They suggested I take Zyrtec, and obviously i took it every day for about 3 months with zero relief from the horrible itching. When summer came around I got a job washing cars i the hots sun and the first couple days were hell but it seemed like my body acclimated to the heat after a while. At this point I was extremely happy because now I could go have fun with  my friends and enjoy out doors. Once I had to stop the job because school came back around the itchiness slowly crept back in my life.It is now becoming winter and the intense itching muffles my ability to exercise and enjoy it. What is really bad is that I am a senior in high school and I saved all the easy classes for this year, which include 2 P.E. classes, so I'm scratching away like a mad man, even though it makes it worse and not enjoying a second of my senior year. So far i have tried creams,antihistamines, and hydration and zero success. But may be there is a name for this bothersome itch. I googled today and not only found this article but came across an article that discussed Exercise-induced anaphylaxis it said that certain foods and chemicals in food can cause it like caffeine!!!I started thinking to myself when was the last day I didn't have a coke? and couldn't remember one. So my NEW Goal is to cut out caffeine for a couple months, take the Zyrtec,drink plenty of Water, and lotion up every day then see where I'm at every day and hopefully I will improve. I know exactly what you are going through and it's always good to know that there are others out there. Stand strong and keep me up to date with any more info you may acquire. Thank You 

for some reason ive been getting unbearable ithy in public places like when i walk in a mall or get a little anxious. IN the begining of november i was in great shape I was able to do well over a hundred push ups. Then at the end of november my skin got really dry and itchy and it make my intense push ups workput  10 times harder with the itch. I can now onlt do about 40 push ups because my skin is preventing me from doing much exercise. I use to be so energeic and strog but my unbearably itchy skin is making me weak. Does any one know how I can no be itchy?

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i have the same problem, and i usually beat it by working out. Running helps alot. i pretty much fry like bacon when i push myself for the first time in a while, but after the first ten minute run, the itch slowly disappears. the catch is that i have to keep exercising or the itch will find its way back. i didn't go to a doctor for it, though i meant to, but i had suspected it being circulation issues cause it just made the most sense. i'm glad talking to people on the internet turns out to be better than waiting in line for some fool to stare at me and hand me skittles.

in my opinion, cooling off with lotions and water is only extremely short term and helps nothing. we are among the few who have this circulation problem  (and the sweaty itch is also a really good guess) whatever the problem, only making yourself sweat regularly to keep your pores cleaned out or to keep your circulation high seems to be the answer. in a way, we should be thankful...our body forces us to be healthier than the rest (i know, i know, don't slap me, lol)

I think it's called exercise urticaria something like that. I am so glad I'm not the only one. I have tried oatmeal baths, chaffing cream you name it. Well it's not as bad anymore; what I do is stay hydrated during exercise, wear loose clothing and shower in cool water following exercise and when you get out of the shower make sure to moisturize your skin. And just an FYI according to my research there's no cure due to they don't know what causes it only antihistamines are prescribed.

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whenever i exercise at all i get extremely itchy. the only thing that helps is scrubbing very well with a cloth in the shower within 8 hours before exercising. i hope that helps

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This typically happens the first few times I do cardio after having not done it for awhile.  After a few sessions, it goes away

Resurrecting a 5 year old thread.


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Nov 20 2012 17:38
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It's probably your capillaries. I have this problem a lot if it is slightly cool outside or if the a/c is on where I'm working out. Never happens to me when it is hot, so what I do is wear leggings. For some reason that helps.

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