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Hormonal changes in menopause not only can result in hot flushes and night sweats but also can be attributed to problems concerning skin. It is important that we realise that changes in hormone levels are the source of many symptoms and one of these is itchy skin.

Acne which can develop because of hormonal changes and often develops in women who had acne in their teenage years, might find acne returning in menopause.

Decrease in the production of oestrogen contributes to developing skin problems. Oestrogen is an important contributor to the condition of the skin and the resultant drop in oestrogen levels which affects the production of collagen which is primarily responsible for the elasticity and support of the skin. Oestrogen decline contributes to dry skin and reduce the body’s ability to produce the necessary skin oil levels which are important in keeping the skin moist, resulting in dryness and itching.

Pruritis or itchy skin, is the word used to describe the feeling of itchiness and is defined as an unpleasant sensation that provokes the desire to scratch.  Changes in the skin caused by menopause can often be traced to this condition. Other changes can be changes to the pigment in the skin, acne and wrinkles. The feeling of itchiness varies in intensity and can be mild or severe resulting in disruption to everyday life.

Women may also experience other skin problems brought about by menopause such as crawling skin whereby women report a sensation like insects crawling on their skin. This condition sometimes referred to as formication can be associated with hormonal changes during menopause. Women also report symptoms of numbness or a tingling, prickly feeling on the skin.

There are various symptoms reported by women going through menopause. Dry and itchy skin occur in the back, arms and legs, neck and chest. Women may also report skin rash, irritated skin and even miniature bumps on the skin.

It is important to understand that there may be other contributing factors to itchy skin such as diabetes, skin cancer, drug use and side effects of certain medications, low vitamin levels, hypothyroidism and even skin cancers.

It is likely that if, your itchy skin has developed during menopause, that the reduced hormone levels are the cause and, so you may get relief by having these missing hormones supplemented. Alongside of hormone supplementation women can also ensure that they help to keep their skin healthy by avoiding certain things and ensuring a healthy routine.

Things to avoid include, smoking, long hot showers in favour of shorter warm showers, avoid over exposure to the sun, stress, late nights that interrupt regular sleep patterns and avoiding certain soaps and lotions that may have ingredients that contribute to skin irritation.

It is important to have a healthy diet, rich in Omega 3 and B vitamins, ensure adequate intake of water to keep the body well hydrated. Keep your skin moist by using quality skin creams and lotions especially after bathing. Protect your skin from the sun using suitable sunscreens that provide good protection from exposure to the sun’s intensity.

If you are experiencing the above symptom, please do not hesitate to contact us on 1300 883 405 to book a free consultation and discuss this with one of our doctors.

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