Why do my hands itch?
September 27, 2007 8:27 AM   Subscribe

Why do I have itchy bath-hands?

If on occasion when I sleep with a t-shirt on, say on a friend's couch, I get sweaty around the head and neck. This is something I'm used to, so not really any problem there. But if I manage to tuck my hands up around my shoulders and sleep that way through the night, I wake up with wrinkly hands that itch like mad. The wrinkles are akin to when you spend too much time in the tub. Why do they itch? And what can I do to alleviate the itchiness?

I don't use any skin treatments currently, nor am I experiencing any skin issues aside from this occasional one.
posted by carsonb to Health & Fitness (6 answers total)
 
Could this be an allergic reaction to the pressure you might be putting on your hands? I once got itchy hands after I mowed the lawn. My allergist said it was brought on by the pressure I was applying to the mower handle. Interesting.
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 10:22 AM on September 27, 2007


Somehow it seems there's too much moisture getting on your hands. Are you tucking them in your armpits? Or are you like putting your hands together and then sleeping with your head resting on them? It seems like your hands must be sweating more than usual somehow, which leads to "bath hands". As for the itching, it could be caused by pressure as above, or because of the excess moisture. Are you getting any rashes or raised bumps along with the itchy?
posted by misanthropicsarah at 10:43 AM on September 27, 2007


Could be a kind of heat rash. Could also be a sensitivity to laundry detergent or fabric softener trapped in the more elastic fabric around the T-shirt's neck. Those would be my guesses—you can test which it might be by sleeping in the same position without the T-shirt one night.
posted by limeonaire at 11:34 AM on September 27, 2007


I don't think it's excess moisture, but rather DRYness. As in you probably are sweating alot, and, like when you spend to much time in the bath, the natural oils on/in your skin are lost.

Some good lotion before bed may help, and when you wake up.
posted by Espoo2 at 11:39 AM on September 27, 2007


Could this be an allergic reaction to the pressure you might be putting on your hands?

Could be?

Are you tucking them in your armpits? Or are you like putting your hands together and then sleeping with your head resting on them? Are you getting any rashes or raised bumps along with the itchy?

If I'm laying on my right side, I think I tuck my right arm up so that I'm holding my shoulder and supporting my neck with my wrist. The left hand gets tucked up under my chin, folded similarly (stretches my computer-sore wrists that way). And no, no bumps or rashes, just the wrinkling and a redness akin to pressure effects, I guess.

Could also be a sensitivity to laundry detergent or fabric softener trapped in the more elastic fabric around the T-shirt's neck.

Could be, but my detergent/softener doesn't bother me at all any other time and I use homemade softener—no estrogen for me, thanks! Also, I can't test your hypothesis because I don't get sweaty when I sleep shirtless.

I don't think it's excess moisture, but rather DRYness....Some good lotion before bed may help, and when you wake up.

I'll try that, thanks! And thanks to all.
posted by carsonb at 4:55 PM on September 27, 2007


Could it just be from exposure to sweat? When I sweat a lot, the salt on my skin leaves me with a short-lived itchy red rash.
posted by croutonsupafreak at 8:59 PM on September 27, 2007


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