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Itching During Pregnancy

What is Itching During Pregnancy?

Estimates are that about one in five women will experience itching at some point during their pregnancy. The cause is usually due to hormonal changes. As a woman's abdomen and breasts expand, it causes the overlying skin to stretch, which can lead to irritation and itching.

Treatments

Avoid cleansing with water that's too hot since that can make the itching worse. Another way to relieve skin itching during pregnancy is to wear, loose cotton fabrics that breathe and avoid synthetics. Stay away from heat and sunlight as much as possible. Always check with your dermatologist.

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All about Itching During Pregnancy

Pregnancy brings lots of bodily changes, some of them pleasant and some not so much. One bothersome problem that some women experience during pregnancy is itchy skin. Estimates are that about one in five women will experience itching at some point during their pregnancy. This makes it one of the more common pregnancy-related problems.

What Causes It?

Itching during pregnancy is usually due to hormonal changes. As a woman's abdomen and breasts expand, it causes the overlying skin to stretch, which can lead to irritation and itching. Intense itching that starts late in pregnancy can be a sign of a condition called cholestatis of pregnancy. During pregnancy, levels of pregnancy-related hormones rise, and this can affect how the gallbladder and liver function. When this happens, it causes bile to build up in the liver and enter the blood stream. This leads to intense itching, usually involving the palms of the hands and soles of the feet, although it can occur anywhere. More importantly, it can affect the growing fetus, increasing the risk of premature birth and stillbirth. That's why it's a good idea to talk to a doctor if itching during pregnancy is a problem.

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