Sunday, September 6, 2009

why do wounds itch when they are healing

Some people ask why do wounds itch when they are healing .
In fact the itch is caused by the healing process. This may come as a surprise to many people reading this, but we know very little about itch as compared to pain. We are not sure if the same nerves perform both functions and which receptors mediate pain (other than the histamine system which is well known in terms of insect bites). Recent work has started to look at this . Some scientists have this theory.

The itch of a healing wound is caused by the growth of new cells underneath the old scab. New skin cells would be growing underneath there, and as they form a new layer of skin, then the scab becomes more tightly stretched over this zone of activity. This can make it feel itchy. The itch sensation for burn survivors may be a tingling feeling caused by nerves re-growing, or from dry skin caused by the lack of natural oil production since oil glands may have been damaged or destroyed by the burn. As the nerves grow and start to receive and send messages, they may create that itchy feeling. The skin in this area will be a lot less thick than everywhere else, so these new nerve cells will be under a lot more pressure.

Most people say that itching is a sign of healing. It is best to avoid itching of the wound. If it becomes too much of a problem, speak with the doctor or nurse. They may order medications by mouth or some topical cream to help make this more tolerable.

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