Wednesday, 24 December 2008

The Menstrual Itch

This is an itch that is again created by some type of imbalance within the body. 

I have noticed that about 2-3 days before my period arrives, my body, arms, legs, neck, etc itches constantly. It is like a background noise that is always there. If I dare to scratch any part then the eczema slowly rears its ugly head.  

Once the period starts, the itching subsides.

So what is happening to the body?
I found the image on the right in wikipedia (of course). 

A couple of things stand out to me:
  1. The core body temperature rises
  2. Progesterone levels are increasing and estrogen levels are decreasing before the period.
  3. On the onset of ones period there is a sudden fall away of progesterone
Again I have found drinking more water when one is itchy has some effect in reducing the itch. The other is being in a nice cold environment. It is no wonder I find myself drawn to the ice and snow! -20 degrees celcius seems so inviting!

As for the progesterone levels,  perhaps I don't have enough of it or it is out of sync! I have read it is suppose to have a calming effect and there is a tendency for one to feel lethargic or depressed. Strangely I have quite an opposite effect leading up to the period. I have a lot of energy and when running, can feel like I can run forever!!! Two nights before my period I have insomnia. On the first day of my period, I want to sleep the whole day.

Without medical measurements of the production of my hormones, it would be difficult to understand how it is affecting the eczematic skin.  However, a rising body temperature will explain why being in the cold is the best thing for reducing the itchiness, as well as drinking water.


Anonymous said...

hey, i just came across your blog and i have been experiencing eczema for some time too..its one skin condition that i would wish never existed but recently i have come across this liver detox flush using grapefruit and olive oil. It helped in bringing down the itch level on my skin n it's worth a shot if you are interested.

I want good skin said...

Yes please - say more - how long would you do the detox for and how long does the itch stay away?

Anonymous said...

i have been doing this liver flush fortnightly for almost 6 months but i quit steroids and western medication much earlier on as i didnt quite like being dependent on them .the itch has went down a great deal since then but i still reckon diet plays a great deal in keeping the itch away like avoiding seafood, dairy products, or nuts or anything that you might be allergic to.
here's the website for resources on eczema

the liver detox is the dr hulda liver cleanse and gall bladder flush.

Anonymous said...

I've also been suffering from ezcema in the last year and been staying away from any cortisone oitment since it just doesn't work. Itchiness level is aloso much higher before my periods. In the last few months I have been doing a liver flush/detox with psyllium (one glass morning and before bed) combined with infrared light session every day (10 to 15 min). I don't know which one of the 2 did the trick (or the combination) but the itch is now much more bearable. Infrared light can be bought as a heating device or you can buy the big light bulb and build up your own light divice with a socket equiped with clamps. just don't leave it ''on'' unattended since it can be kink of a fire hazard :)

Anonymous said...

I too have suffered with excezma for 30+ years and it has gotten progressively worse as I got older. It has remained a constant on my hands but it travelled and dissapeared on many parts of my body. Now that I am in my early 40's I do notice that excezma flairs up two to three days before my period and then seems to calm down.

I thought I was going crazy but I am glad you noticed it too.

The moment I notice this, I apply my steriod cream to those areas that itch, right before I go to bed, and then everything seems to be ok. Until next month, of course.

Anonymous said...

Hi, sorry to hear about your condition too. I am keeping log for my daughter's condition and now believe that ezcema is a estrogen/progesterone ratio condition due to either high intake of phytoestrogen (plant) food which most are naturally high in copper. Yes, a Vit C (using lemon or lime juice, no sugar or supplement) flush does help to remove the bad estrogens (which is a group of hormones). Also taking zinc supplement might help to improve the healing. A near-infrared lamp (by phillips) can help to improve the condition. Good luck! Base case, make sure that you have a good multivit and mineral supplement, followed by liver detox using a gentle herb like milk thistle. Good luck.

Elliot Smith said...


Your symptoms seem to be in direct correlation with something called autoimmune progesterone dermatitis or autoimmune progesterone eczema. It is very rare with only 50 reported cases ever in the USA. It is frequently misdiagnosed as atopic contact dermatitis resulting in delay of treatment. I hope this helps if so email me ellionator(at)gmail

Anonymous said...

OMG your period itch symtoms are exactly like mine!! The only thing is that I do not suffere with eczema.

I itch like crazy leading up to my period especially my head, groin, around the ankles and sometimes armpits (thought rarely).

I tend to use Vicks or some other mentholated product which distracts from the itchy feeling

Anonymous said...

My eczema used to be so bad all over my body and nothing helped. I know people want a natural solution which I understand.. but the only thing that helped me was going to a dermatologist and being prescribed azathioprine.. it's a nasty drug but it worked. 6 months of that drug and although I still have dry skin and a flare up when I eat eggs or almonds accidentally.. my skin is almost perfect.

It helped to get you past the itch scratch cycle so you stop reinfection.