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July 17, 2022

What Causes Itchy Skin at Night?

Why do I itch more at night?




I've been lying in bed every night, scratching itches I didn't have or didn't notice during the day. What exactly is going on? What can I do to help?

You have nocturnal pruritus, which is a fairly common problem. This perplexing condition can be caused by a variety of factors, including our own circadian rhythm, and the body's natural 24-hour cycle. This shift can cause nighttime skin changes like increased blood flow, feelings of warmth, and lower levels of corticosteroids, which would otherwise suppress inflammation (and itching).



Menopause and pregnancy hormone changes can also cause skin dryness and itching, which can be worse at night. Other possible culprits include antibiotics, blood pressure pills, opioids, and diuretics, as well as skin care products such as soaps, deodorants, and bug repellents.

Nighttime itching can occasionally indicate a more serious health problem, such as hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid gland) or liver or kidney disease.

To relieve the itch, try the following methods:

Replace your bedding and pajamas with softer, cotton-rich options.
Don't linger in the bath or shower, as this can cause dry skin.
Apply a thick moisturizer to the itchiest spots.
Add moisture to the air in your bedroom by using a humidifier.
If none of these remedies provides relief, consult your doctor about the next steps.
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No Health content on this site, regardless of date, should be used to replace direct medical advice from your doctor or another trained practitioner.
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