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Common antipruriticsEdit

Topical antipruritics in the form of creams and sprays are often available over the counter. The active ingredients usually belong to these classes:

Oral antipruritics also exist and are usually prescription drugs. These can be antihistamines as above[2] or:

Disputed and questionable antipruriticsEdit

Home remediesEdit

  • Cooling with ice or cold water (usually stops the itch for as long as the ice or cold water is applied)[citation needed]
  • Slightly painful stimulation such as rubbing, slapping, scratching, or heating based on a spinal antagonism between pain- and itch-processing neurons[citation needed]
  • Pine tree gum applied to the affected areas for short periods of time can help in drawing out the oils and drying the skin.
  • Frequent washing of the affected areas in hot water with a drying soap removes oils that come to the surface as the blisters form and provides temporary relief from itching.
  • Applying emollients to the skin such as baby oil or petroleum jelly after showering


  1. ^ Hercogová J (2005). "Topical anti-itch therapy". Dermatologic therapy. 18 (4): 341–3. doi:10.1111/j.1529-8019.2005.00033.x. PMID 16297007.
  2. ^ Stöppler, Melissa Conrad. "Itch (Itching or Pruritus)". MedicineNet. Retrieved 3 June 2019.
  3. ^ Inui, Shigeki (2015). "Nalfurafine hydrochloride to treat pruritus: a review". Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology: 249. doi:10.2147/CCID.S55942. ISSN 1178-7015. PMC 4433050.
  4. ^ D. Long, N. H. Ballentine, J. G. Marks. Treatment of poison ivy/oak allergic contact dermatitis with an extract of jewelweed. Am. J. Contact. Dermat. 8(3):150-3 1997 PMID 9249283
  5. ^ M. R. Gibson, F. T. Maher. Activity of jewelweed and its enzymes in the treatment of Rhus dermatitis. J. Am. Pharm. Assoc. Am. Pharm. Assoc. 39(5):294-6 1950 PMID 15421925
  6. ^ J. D. Guin, R. Reynolds. Jewelweed treatment of poison ivy dermatitis. Contact Dermatitis 6(4):287-8 1980 PMID 6447037
  7. ^ Zink, B. J.; Otten, E.J.; Rosenthal, M.; Singal, B (1991). "The Effect Of Jewel Weed In Preventing Poison Ivy Dermatitis". Journal of Wilderness Medicine. 2 (3): 178–182. doi:10.1580/0953-9859-2.3.178. Retrieved 2008-01-16.[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ Lee CS, Koo J (2005). "Psychopharmacologic therapies in dermatology: an update". Dermatologic clinics. 23 (4): 735–44. doi:10.1016/j.det.2005.05.015. PMID 16112451.
  9. ^ "American Topics. An Outdated Notion, That Calamine Lotion". Archived from the original on 19 June 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-19.
  10. ^ Appel, L.M. Ohmart and R.F. Sterner, Zinc oxide: A new, pink, refractive microform crystal. AMA Arch Dermatol 73 (1956), pp. 316–324. PMID 13301048
  11. ^ September 2, 2008 FDA Document Archived July 16, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^ a b Paul Tawrell, Wilderness Camping and Hiking(Falcon Distribution, 2008), 212.

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