Exercise makes me itchy!

by Sarah
(VA)

Hello all. Im a 37 yr old mother of a son who was recently diagnosed with SPD. While learning about his SPD, I discovered that I also likely have SPD, though not as badly as my son. I have had one particular problem for years that doctors can not explain and I was wondering if it could be SPD related, if anyone has ever heard of this.


Every time I try to exercise vigorously, like very brisk walking for a good length of time, my whole lower body itches very fiercely. Im not talking about a little spot, I mean my WHOLE lower body feels like its one big hive. No visible hives or rash appears. I thought at first it was a response to pants or heat, but this happens even when wearing loose shorts or in cold weather alike. My doctor can not explain why this happens. Is this an SPD issue? And better yet, does anyone have any suggestions to help it?? Thank you in advance! This site has been a wonderful resource for us!
Blessings to all
Sarah

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Aug 30, 2016
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Vibratory urticaria
by: Brenda

I too have had this problem and for years just thought it was normal. When I did my allergy testing I brought up to my allergist that whenever I exercise or expose myself to vibrations (chainsaws, mountain biking, electric massagers, running, etc) I itch so badly and turn bright red. She immediately said I wasn't crazy!! What it is is a histamine response to vibration.

That being said an anti-histamine helps which is why one of the other responders is able to see a difference with Zyrtec. If you take it an hour before your workout that should help tremendously. The other thing that I have found to help during my workouts is spandex. I wear compression clothing that doesn't allow my body or extra body weight to jiggle or move :) that does seem to help a bit as well! Hope this helps others because it took me a long time as well to figure out!

Oct 07, 2014
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Tips and tricks
by: Alecczieus

I started noticing the itch from the age of 12, I am 44 now and it still happens sometimes when I excecise, however, the following is what I have learned by just observing my body in the process. When I was younger, it would get so severe I could almost cry.

1. Do not scratch. Scratching gives a 'sweet' temporary relief which soon increases the severity of the itch. Therefore try not to scratch, or better still, try to get used to not scratching it.

2. If you are able to keep excercising during the itch, you'll find out that no matter how severe it is, it actually stops after a while. It might take longer for some people but It actually stops. Try to go as far as you can, and make sure to repeat the process/excercise often, always taking it as far as possible. With time it begins to take an extremely intense workout to trigger it and I suspect that with time also you may push it so far away that you may not be capable of the level of workout that can trigger the itching.

3. The reason for the suggestion above is because I think the itch is caused by the 'loosening'/burning of the fat cells under the skin, because if I rest between workouts, the itch returns only if I increase the workout intensity.

Also it seems to me that, the itch occurs mostly around where the most fat is in the body. Pay attention to your body and you'll discover what is true for you.

Usually when I drastically reduce fatty foods like heavy fried foods, chocolates and sugars then the itching reduces.

I also noticed that I can be in good shape, even become slim and still itch. As you know slim does not mean "no pile up of fat" under the skin, slim just means the quantity is reduced.

Sep 03, 2014
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Exercise induced skin allergy
by: Anonymous

Hi! I have suffered from this my whole life. If I take Zyrtec every day of my life, and I have no problem. That medicine doesn't make me sleepy, and I can get it cheap at the drugstore now that it has generic versions.

It has been referred to as "exercise induced allergy" by a super allergy specialist I wound up going to four referrals later. The crazy insane (scratch till I draw blood if I succumb...!) itching for me does show up as red, though. It is mostly on my legs (esp when I was a child) but now arms too. To convince one of the allergists of my problem (I thought they just thought I was crazy, was unfamiliar with it), I wore a tank top and running shorts and went out and ran around the parking lot until I got a nice severe reactions, merely a couple of minutes in. they took photos and I got a referral.

I didn't want to take Zyrtec anymore every day of my life...Dr suggested allergy shots to desensitize me. I instead just take zyrtec when I exercise...and for me, exercise means any time my circulation increases. So, this could be walking with any effort, swimming, intimate relations, you name it.

My self diagnosis - when my circulation increases, things I am not normally allergic to (in an obvious way) are suddenly very potent. So, those normally mild allergies I have to say pollen or grass or dust or maybe an ingredient in food or even a soap, I am suddenly extremely allergic to.

And, because sometimes weird things lead to weird things, I'll just share that the crazy itching in my ears I get in the fall and winter and randomly sometimes at night (possibly to mold, despite industrial purifier no pets sadly any longer :( and a zillion precautions) is solved by dripping rubbing alcohol into my ears, waiting a short while, then draining out.

Best of luck to everyone...

Sep 21, 2012
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Itchy while running? here's help
by: Nutrition studier

Try eating a tiny bit of high alkaline food just before, well maybe an hour... thus raising your ph a bit. We tend to be acidic and it is stored in our fat cells. As they are not at their peak performance for health under 7.3 ph this is recommended. Watermelon, Cucumber , Kale, Kelp, Spinache, Parsley, Broccoli, green drinks( such as wheat grass), or sprouts (soy, alfalfa, brocolli, mung beans). Having an acidic body is also a breading ground for cancer. Take care of your hydration. Adding lemon to water raises ph.

Mar 01, 2012
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Know the feeling
by: Anonymous

35 now and have always itched, lower back, sides, stomach, buttocks, and thighs within 2.5 minutes of starting to run or jog. Hated cross-country in high school. Some research I did seemed to indicate that it may be related to the rubbing of cells, especially fat cells) on the underside of the skin, causing a histamine reaction. Some folks get relief by taking anti-allergy medication, such as Benadryl, a little before exercising. I haven't tried myself, as it puts me out.

Mar 01, 2012
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i itch too!
by: Anonymous

this happens to me as well... I believe that when you exercise and do it at a fast pace, you're burning calories and fat.. I'm a bit overweight and feel that have too much fat to burn so lately when i walk fast i feel that mostly in my inner thigh and legs.. I think this is normal.. Not sure that fits in the SPD category, but it could.

Mar 01, 2012
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me too!
by: Anonymous

This same exact thing happens to me only it''s not my whole entire lowe body just my legs. Unfortunatly i don't have any advise on how to prevent it from happening :/
If you figure it out please post on here and let me know!

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