Q Dear Auntie Pearl, I am 16 years old and I have a problem.
I am itchy all the time.
It’s been like this for months now.
My face, my legs, my tummy, alles jik!
We went to the clinic, but they just gave me stuff that didn’t work.
I am constantly scratching and it just won’t go away!
Do I have vuilsiek?
A Hi Pamela, there are a few reasons why your skin is so itchy, meisie.
You could simply have an allergy or it could even be bugs. This doesn’t mean you are morsig nuh.
Did you know, there are thousands of goggas living all around us, on us, inside us – even on your skin and in your bed! They are incredibly small, so you can’t see them.
An itchy skin can very well be a reaction to the bites of one or more of these goggas – like an allergic reaction.
Most of the time it’s either bed bugs, fleas, head lice, pubic lice or mosquitoes.
But don’t worry Pammie, there are easy treatments for all of these bugs – you just have to figure out which one you are dealing with – and in the meantime there are a few easy general things you and your family can do:
Tell your mammie to keep your clothes and bed linen as clean as possible, hang things out in the sun if you can, don’t sleep or stay in wet or damp clothes or komberse, don’t let pets sleep in your bed and keep the house and yaardt as clean as possible.
You might also be allergic to something: your body lotion, soap, shampoo, underarm, spray, washing powder or fabric softener, even the lipstick or lipgloss you wear.
All these things could have an ingredient in that you are actually having an allergic reaction to.
If your itchiness is also red and swollen, it might be this.
You could even have ringworm, Pamela.
Moenie worry nie, ringworm actually has nothing to do with worms; it’s a fungal skin condition and many mense struggle with this.
It likes damp or humid areas and places where you sweat, and if you wear a lot of tight clothes like those skinny jeans, you might be dealing with this outjie.
You could also be allergic to something you are eating like cow’s milk, peanuts, or fish.
It might be time to go back to the clinic and ask them about these possibilities, and what you could do that will help.
For now, try to scratch as little as possible, and you could also try some of Auntie’s itchy skin home remedies for some relief:
Put a cold, wet, clean cloth on the skin that itches and leave it there for about five to 10 minutes.
Moisturise your skin, but make sure you use a plain cream with no additives, fragrances and perfumes. You can even put your moisturiser in the fridge to give it a lekker cooling effect.
Wash or bathe if you can, in lukewarm water. Not hot, lekker lou.
Wear loose clothes, in cotton or soft materials if you can – and remember that anything that’s rough like a jeans or wool like a jersey might make your skin itch.