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What is Pruritus Ani?

Pruritus ani
Pruritus Ani, also referred to as itchy bottom or anal itching, describes a persistent irritation within the anal region creating a strong urge to scratch the location. The itch is really so severe to be able to cause sleep problems. The harder the irritated area is scratched, the worse the symptoms get. This condition may appear in anyone, but is most typical in people between 40 and 60 years old. Symptoms are strongest after using the toilet at night.

Reasons for Pruritus Ani

Pruritus Ani is not a diagnosis but rather an indication. Its underlying causes may be many and sometimes no cause is identified - in this case the problem is called idiopathic pruritus ani. Possible causes are:

 Eczema, psoriasis, along with other skin conditions

 Irritation by soap, detergents, colored mouthwash, etc...

 Excessive moisture in the area, for example from excessive sweating

 Dried-out skin, as will occur in older persons

 Fungal or bacterial infections

 Laxative abuse - these can irritate the anus

 Threadworms - these cause itching mostly at night

 Damage towards the area, as an example as a result of excessive cleaning


 Anal fissures and anal abrasions

 Anal tumors

 Stress and anxiety

 Irritants in food and beverages. Common examples are coffee, tea, beer, dairy food, tomato products, chocolate, nuts

Pruritus Ani Treatment

Treatment of itchy bottom will depend on the cause. If the cause can be a bacterial infection, antibiotics is going to be used. If the cause is hemorroids, specific creams will be used, and so forth. However, some advice does apply to any or all cases. Particularly, the area needs to be kept clean and dry whenever you can, to prevent further irritation and infection. You ought to wash your anus after passing faeces and before you go to bed. After showering, dry having a hair dryer or perhaps a soft towel (pat, don't rub). Avoid scented soaps as these can cause irritation. If you have a tendency to sweat a whole lot in the daytime, work with a tissue in your underwear. Avoid or limit the meals mentioned previously. Do not scratch however, if you're scratching anyway, ensure you trim your nails whenever you can to minimize damages.

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