MayoClinic.com notes that liver disease and kidney failure can also cause itching.
Rashes and itchy skin, or pruritis, can result from a host of conditions. Skin disorders such as psoriasis, eczema and allergic dermatitis can cause severe itching, as can insect bites and contact with the volatile oils in poison ivy. MayoClinic.com notes that liver disease and kidney failure can also cause itching. Many people turn to holistic remedies to soothe itching, but if you have unexplained itching and rashes, see your doctor for a diagnosis. Also check with your doctor before taking any herbs or supplements.
Chamomile Holistic healers and naturopaths have long recommended the flowers of the German chamomile, botanically known as Matricaria recutita, to alleviate itching and inflammation. The University of Maryland Medical Center states that chamomile is often used topically in a poultice for inflamed skin, and may be moderately effective in treating eczema. According to a review published in the January 2009 issue of the "Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology," chamomile has antiallergenic, anti-inflammatory and pain-reducing effects; one of its constituents, the natural moisturizer levomenol, can promote healing and reduce itching. Before using chamomile, check with your doctor. Don't use it if you are pregnant, asthmatic, taking blood-thinning medications, or are allergic to asters, chrysanthemums or ragweed. Calendula Oil Calendula oil, made from the Calendula officinalis plant, is a traditional herbal remedy used by holistic healers for itching skin and rashes. Acupuncture Today recommends calendula, in conjunction with other oils, to treat insect bites, poison ivy, and weeping and crusting rashes and sores caused by eczema. There is some scientific research supporting the belief that calendula can soothe itchy skin. In a clinical study published in the April 15, 2004 issue of the "Journal of Clinical Oncology," researchers found that calendula oil was highly effective in preventing acute dermatitis caused by radiation therapy in breast cancer patients.
Homeopathic Sulphur Holistic healers sometimes prescribe homeopathic remedies, particularly sulfur, for skin itching. In homeopathic medicine, practitioners attempt to treat symptoms by giving infinitesimal amounts of a substance that, in larger amounts, would cause the same symptoms in a healthy person. The homeopathic sulfur remedy is made from sulfur found in volcanic areas, which is then highly diluted; homeopaths believe that the resultant fluid contains a "memory," or essence, of the original substance. According to Blue Shield Complementary and Alternative Health, the sulfur remedy is particularly indicated where there is a rash that is very red, inflamed and intensely itchy. Homeopaths prescribe their remedies according to personality type. The personality type most suited to the sulfur remedy is self-centered, intelligent but impractical and disorganized. If symptoms worsen at night and in the heat, but are better with fresh air and cold drinks, this is another indication that sulfur may be the right remedy. Ask your doctor before taking homeopathic sulfur to treat a rash.