Get relief for that itchy bottom

We get it rgss202j.dll. This isn’t a problem you’re dying to share with your friends. The good news: it’s common. But it may be important to get looked at before it becomes serious. Anal itching (the fancy term is pruritis ani) can often be so annoying that you may struggle to concentrate during normal activities. And you can’t exactly scratch that area in a public space!

In fact, scratching could make the problem worse, as you could spread bacteria to the area through your fingers. It can also lead to tears in the skin that can cause infection.

Itchy factors

  • Indigestion, diarrhoea or faecal incontinence.
  • Piles (haemorrhoids).
  • Irritation if the skin is constantly moist.
  • Too much or too little cleaning in the area.
  • Cancerous or non-cancerous growths.
  • Fungal infections caused by yeast.
  • Sexually transmitted diseases.
  • Worms (especially pinworms) in the intestines often crawl to the anus to dispose of their eggs, which can cause itching, especially at night.

If it’s something as simple as a skin irritation, the itching will clear up if you keep the area clean and dry. But other factors like infections, growths or worms will need a doctor’s help.

When to move your bum to a doctor

If there are other symptoms like bleeding, digestive problems, a change in your normal bowel movements, or stomach pain, you need to see a doctor as soon as possible.

Don’t be embarrassed. Your doctor is used to treating these things! If you leave it, it could get worse, and might even be dangerous. Your doctor will be able to tell what the cause is, and give you the appropriate treatment.

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Treatment

For irritation, your doctor may give you a cream, and for worms or an STI, antibiotics may be prescribed. If there’s something more serious, your doctor may have to do a biopsy or colonoscopy.

How to ditch the itch

  1. Wash and dry the area regularly.
  2. Avoid scented shower gels or soaps.
  3. Change out of sweaty workout clothes or sports gear immediately.
  4. Avoid underwear that makes you sweat. Stick to plain cotton briefs.
  5. Wear loose, breathable clothing and avoid too-tight skinny jeans or leggings and fabric that cause sweat.
  6. Wash your hands before you go to the bathroom to avoid spreading germs to the area.
  7. Avoid coloured or patterned toilet paper.
  8. If you’re prone to yeast infections, reduce your sugar intake and never take antibiotics without a good probiotic.

Everyone had a scratchy bottom at some point in their lives. It’s part of being human. Don’t be embarrassed – just make sure you don’t leave it too long to get checked out. And, if in doubt, why not chat to one of our doctors on the Hello Doctor app?

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