I have lived like this for 7 ½ years. I probably gave up hope after around year two, realizing this was the way it was. I will always be itchy.
Because, honestly, I had tried darn near everything to get rid of my perpetual itch to no avail—I mean, EVERYTHING. Including: steroids (3x), creams, lotions, oils, oatmeal baths, cold showers, pills, Benadryl, flaxseed oil, dandelion extract.
AND, because I have experienced a 10 on the scale of 1-to-10 (10 being: rip-my-skin-off-and-put-a-bullet-in-my-skull), I figured a 2 or 3 was manageable (what I experience on a daily basis). The last six weeks of my pregnancy with Callie, I developed an intense rash that led to the worst, unimaginable, itching a person can experience (100 mosquito bites, poison ivy, chicken pox TIMES 10 rolled all into one lovely itching package). This kind of itching is called PUPPPS. Few women experience this in pregnancy (lucky us).
Now, seven years later, I fortunately don’t have the horribly ugly rash that I had when I was pregnant. BUT, I still have the itch. I start to scratch and BOOM it explodes right into hives. I scratch (more like dig) my skin to the point of bleeding and bruising. It intensifies the more I scratch, getting worse and worse until I force myself to stop. It’s ugly and awful. As I write this, my back is going crazy, but I’m controlling it with my mind. (I’m only a 2 right now—doable).
Well, I decided to go back to a dermatologist (a different one) and try again. The itch has become a bit worse now. Well, Dr. Amy (who is slightly spastic) had a plan. First, I was to stop using the prescription lotion my OBGYN had prescribed a year and a half ago, BECAUSE (per Dr. Amy) “it’s dangerous to use for prolonged periods of time”—sweet. I’m probably gonna get cancer or something. Next, I’m to go and have some blood work done to make sure my thyroid or liver isn’t causing the itching (I will do that this week). But for the next 8 weeks, I’m to take Zyrtec twice a day and put on plenty of moisturizer. The Zyrtec twice a day knocks me out. I’m useless and it isn’t good. So I’ve gone to once a day so I can participate in life (I still itch. I itch right now). Also, she told me to keep my nails short—no nails. Ha,ha,ha . . . the funny thing is that Dr. Amy underestimates me—I have been known to use hairbrushes, SOS pads, screwdriver, forks, and writing utensils. Short nails won’t stop me.
So, in 8 weeks I’m to go back. We’ll see. I’m not too hopeful, but Dr. Amy’s spastic personality is kind of fun. I like crazy people.
AND, if this doesn’t work, I have another plan: to see a “quack doctor” (a good friend calls him). He is a natural doctor who dabbles in herbs and such. Heck, at this point it’s worth a try.
I can’t even imagine what it’s like not to itch. The idea is so foreign to me.
I bet it’s amazing.