What are the most common causes of facial itching?

There are numerous possibilities when it comes to causes of facial itchiness, ranging from dry skin to infections and viruses. Treatments will vary depending on the underlying cause of the itching, although there are topical creams that may offer temporary relief until the cause can be determined. To receive a firm diagnosis, patients suffering from chronic facial itching should see a dermatologist or family doctor for a thorough examination.

Many of the causes of facial itching are easy to remedy and do not cause long-term problems. An unwashed face, for example, can cause itchiness or uncomfortable discomfort. Dry skin is another common ailment that can often be fixed by using a simple over-the-counter moisturizer. Hair products or facial cleansers can also cause allergic reactions, so if newer products are used, they should be ruled out as the source of facial itching, especially if the itching occurs in the same area where the product is applied. Hair gel, for example, can cause itchiness around the hairline.

Allergies can also cause more severe facial itching along with hives and other skin irritation, so if the source of an allergic reaction can't be found quickly, it may be necessary to see a doctor. Additional causes of facial itchiness can include insect bites or sunburn, which can usually be treated at home with lotions, aloe vera, or other topical medications. Bites that are swollen abnormally large or are accompanied by other symptoms may be signs of a venomous bite and should be considered a medical emergency. Sunburns are usually not serious, but should be avoided due to the long-term risk of skin cancer.

There are more serious causes of facial itching that should be checked out by a dermatologist or family doctor right away. The herpes simplex virus can cause itching around the mouth, often accompanied by small raised bumps. The bumps can clump together and become painful over time. Herpes is usually contracted from another person through kissing, oral sex, or other circumstances in which oral fluids are passed from one person to another.

Many viruses are also accompanied by facial and body itching. Most of them are generally mild and self-limited in children, such as chicken pox or fifth disease. Adults who get chickenpox or shingles, caused by the same virus that lies dormant in the body and then reactivates, can be much more serious. These conditions can cause itchy rashes with raised bumps or red areas and are accompanied by high fever, chills, and body aches. Guidance from a physician is recommended.

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