Revealed! What Causes Itchy Skin?

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Stress-related Itch 

An often-overlooked cause of itchy skin is stress. Emotions can have a negative impact on your skin's health. Consider how being nervous can make your skin break out. According to, stress and anxiety can cause a host of problems, including skin problems, like itching. 

Neurological Causes of Itchy Skin 

Yet another overlooked reason for itchy skin is neurological disorders known to dry out the skin, mouth and eyes. They include: 

  • multiple sclerosis;
  • pinched nerves; and
  • inflammatory conditions. 

A recent study published in The Journal of Clinical Investigation from American and Chinese researchers shows a link between uncontrolled chronic itching and pain. Dr. Zhou-Feng Chen, the director of Washington University's Center for the Study of Itch, explained, "In normal itching, there's a fixed pathway that transmits the itch signal. But with chronic itching, many neurons can be turned into itch neurons, including those that typically transmit pain signals. That helps explain why chronic itching can be so excruciating." Their research suggests that pain medicines could be used to help control itching.