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Snapping Out Of The Itch

There are many times when I’ve been in the middle of a massive itchfest and felt like I was sinking into an abyss filled with the sensation of my sharp nails, hot, dry sensitive skin, and anxiety-filled thoughts that seem to just spiral on and on with potentially no end.

Emotional impact of eczema

I had many days and nights where I did not know if I would ever have any kind of control when feeling triggered by an itch. I assumed that every time I would feel one, it would become another painful saga filled with blood, broken skin, and many tears. It was very depressing, horrifying, and most of all very traumatizing.

Holistic health

Thankfully, I started to explore different modes of pain management and the idea of the mind-body connection in my college years. It led me down a path of exploring holistic health and what would be considered new age or alternative modalities to creating more balance and a sense of control over my triggers.

First attempt at eczema itch relief

One of the most helpful things that I do initially when I feel a trigger is to immediately do a long exhale. Sometimes, it feels so overwhelming that at first, I take a deep breath and hold it for no more than one or two seconds. Then, I immediately force myself to exhale. I think symbolically of that exhale as me not only letting go of my breath but letting go of the control that the pain has over my mind and body and letting go of having an hour-long itchfest full of skin damage.

Practice, practice, practice

These days, after practicing this technique for about 14 years, I have found it to be quite effective on its own. There have been many times that I’ve been able to let go of the itch just with this one step alone. I believe that it is the symbolic thought process along with the exhale that helps. And I sense that my body reads the exhale as a signal to relax which actually does help me relax physically.

When exhaling doesn’t work

If the exhale alone is not enough to get rid of the sense of itchiness, another technique that I do that I haven’t seen anyone else talk about yet is to literally snap myself out of it. There have been times where I’ve exhaled with intention but I’m still scratching my face or some part of my body. I can start to feel the rise of histamine and itchiness become even greater.

Sudden itch relief

At this point, I will just shake my hands off of my skin. Often, this gesture is so sudden that it’s enough to help me get my bearings and detach myself from the potential abyss of scratching that otherwise may spiral out of control and make a rash spread, making it even sorer and inflamed.

Taking back control of eczema

It is not an easy task to get control of your eczema triggers and scratching, but it is possible through consistent effort and determination. I often believe that if you can think it, you can make it happen. Hope these tips help you make your scratchfest no longer happen or happen less frequently!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Linette Roungchun moderator
    4 months ago

    I do the same!! The snapping yourself out of it! But mine is a more frustrated verbal “Ugh! Linette! Oh my gosh, just stop, okay? Chill!” as I quickly stand up and put my hands in the air haha! I feel like the shock is enough to get you to forget about the itch for a bit- or at least get your mind off of it! Haha love that you do this!

    Great article. Love that you are using holistic remedies to control the itch. That is wonderful. And thank you for sending me some of them too! 😀

    – Linette ( Moderator)

  • Terry Alabata author
    4 months ago

    Awww, thank you so much for the positive feedback and kind comments Linette! So glad that you have also found your methods of snapping out of it! You have such an amazing spirit and strong mind. So happy to have you join our community here, too, on!

    You’re also very welcome! Hope that they are helpful! 😀

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