Everything has been great in your pregnancy so far. You’ve just moved on from morning sickness and just gained your appetite. Then one day, you get that itch. There’s itching everywhere. Even a slight brush to something drives you crazy. And now you’re thinking, “Is this normal? What in the world is happening to me?”. Well Mama, that’s itching during pregnancy!
Is It Normal to Itch All Over During Pregnancy?
We’d hate to break it to you, but it is common to have itchy skin during pregnancy. In pregnant women, mild itching is a result of increased blood supply to the skin, making it increasingly sensitive.
Itching may also be caused by rapid hormone changes or by the abdominal skin stretching as your little one grows bigger. Other factors may also include dry skin, dehydration and winter weather.
Itchy skin during pregnancy is more common than you think
How Can I Treat Itchy Skin During Pregnancy?
While it is true that itching may become your new “normal”, no one wants to endure itchiness all pregnancy-long. If you are experiencing itchy skin, you don’t have to wait until the pregnancy is over to get rid of the uneasy feeling.
Although it sounds quite simple, having a healthy skin care regimen is key to your pregnancy itchy skin relief. That being said, we have these few simple additions to your skincare routine that can help diminish itching in pregnancy.
Best Remedies for Treating Itchy Skin During Pregnancy
A well-moisturized skin is elastic, moist and healthy. That’s why it’s necessary to moisturize itchy skin regularly, especially during pregnancy where dry skin is extremely common.
It doesn’t hurt to include moisturizing in your skincare routine; show your skin some love by giving it daily applications of luscious, vitamin-rich lotions. Make sure they’re organic and mama-approved though!
Here’s a list of moisturizing products we know you’ll love:
The Spoiled Mama Stretch Marks Prevention Cream
While the Spoiled Mama stretch mark cream is excellent for preventing stretch marks, it’s also perfect for soothing your itchy skin.
Made with organic cocoa butter and infused with vitamin E and 11 organic oils (and of course, unicorn tears!), this cream deeply hydrates your skin while giving it the nourishment it needs. And, the lush smell of orange and chocolates is a big plus!
Soothe your itchy skin with The Spoiled Mama Tummy Butter
Slather a generous helping of this stretch mark cream in itchy areas for as often as you’d like. You can also use it as an after-shower body lotion and on your growing belly to prevent and diminish the appearance stretch marks.
Nourishing Body Oil
Pregnancy oils are also excellent for relieving itching during pregnancy. When applied on the skin, the right oils nourish and hydrate the skin and reinforce the skin’s lipid barrier. However, if you don’t like the slimy feeling after every application, look for non-greasy types, like our very own Bump Gloss stretch mark oil.
You can apply the bump gloss after a shower to lock in moisture and prevent dry skin. For itchy skin, gently massage Bump Gloss on affected areas.
Hydrating Body Wash
When we say hydrating body wash, we’re not talking about your drugstore body wash brands. Most commercial body washes and soap bars strip are moisture vampires--they suck moisture from the skin, leaving it dryer than ever.
Look for a pregnancy-safe, sulfate-free hydrating wash
For a truly hydrating body wash, look for a Mama-approved, sulfate-free wash infused with vitamin E, aloe vera and essential oils. Hydrating body washes drench the skin with moisture and prevent drying and itchiness.
Formulated with the daisy’s cousin, Calendula, this sore nipple cream (a.k.a The Everywhere Balm) helps relieve itchy skin, from insect bites to rashes and eczema. Calendula is a traditional herbal remedy for itchy skin which Mamas all over the world swear by (including me!). Slather on this nipple cream on itchy skin and let it work its *magic*.
How to Treat Itchy Skin Naturally During Pregnancy: Other Tips
Using extra-hydrating and skin-nourishing products is just one part of itching treatment in pregnancy. You’ll also have to develop simple habits to make sure your skin stays supple, well-hydrated and itch-free all day long.
Nourishing your skin from the outside in isn’t enough. Make sure you nourish it from the inside out; drink plenty of water (2.3 liters a day or more) to prevent dehydration and help keep your skin hydrated.
During summer, add an 8-ounce glass of water for every hour of light activity. Not a fan of water? Try adding lemon juice to your water or infuse it with fruit slices and herbs (like mint and basil) to make hydration more exciting!
As much as you may love hot water baths, hot water is bad news for your itchy skin. Hot water strips your skin of moisture, leaving it dryer and more susceptible to itching than usual; not to mention it’s harmful to your little one too. Baths up to your body temperature (98.6℉ or 37C) are not good for you.
Opt for calming, warm (not hot) baths
After your bath, gently pat (not rub) your skin to dry. Rubbing vigorously can pull and stress your skin and cause skin micro-tears and inflammation.
Scratching exacerbates itching, so paws off! Massage your skin with moisturizing creams and oils to soothe your irritated skin.
Tight-fitting clothes rubbing on sensitive skin can make your skin itch more. To minimize itchy skin during pregnancy, try wearing loose clothes made with natural fibers (i.e. cotton) or breathable materials. Avoid wearing garb made with synthetic fibers, as they tend to be more uncomfortable.
Wear clothing your skin feels comfortable in
Go for mild-scented products as heavily-scented cosmetics can worsen your itchy skin. Also, avoid commercial cosmetic products as they’re laden with chemicals that are harmful to your skin, your baby and the environment.
Stress often elicits physical reactions in your body, like inflammation and breakouts. The same is the case with itching; the more you’re stressed, the more it exacerbates your itchy skin.
Find time to relax and meditate. Sip a cup of pregnancy tea, read your favorite book or take a break from social media. Do whatever you feel is necessary to make you feel refreshed and de-stressed.
When Should I Be Worried About Itching During Pregnancy?
Mild itching during pregnancy is okay, but excessive itchy skin can be a sign of intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy (ICP) or sometimes called obstetric cholestasis (OC). When the itching becomes unbearable and non-stop and comes with other symptoms, pay your doctor a visit.
Signs of ICP/OP watch out for include:
- Insufferable itching that may worsen at night
- Dark-colored urine
- Pale bowel movement (poo)
- Jaundice or yellowing of the skin/eyes
How Can I Stop Itching During Pregnancy?
Remember that your body is unique and you may have to experiment with itchy skin treatments to find out what works best for you. However, the basic thing is to take care of your skin both inside and out first.
Also, if you think your symptoms are getting worse, pay your dermatologist/GP/OB-GYN a visit.
Hope this helps!