A person is experiencing pruritis ani when his or her anal area is irritated, uncomfortable and itching. This condition usually affects people between the ages of 40 and 60. It begins when someone experiences a disease, an infection or a skin condition, but it can also occur because of a person’s hygiene habits. The symptoms tend to occur after the person has a bowel movement, but they can also appear at night. Anal itching is highly distressing to people, but at the Arizona Colorectal Experts, we can find a solution for you.
The most common symptom is itching around the anal region. It may also feel like a burning sensation. Because people tend to scratch the area when it itches, it can become inflamed. After the inflammation appears, it causes soreness and discomfort after a bowel movement and can even lead to bleeding.
Sometimes, people begin to wipe very hard and spend more time cleaning the area after the itching begins, but this makes the symptoms worse. After the person has been scratching the area, the itching can turn into a burning sensation. The body’s natural reaction in this situation is to release histamines so that the healing process can begin. The itching dissipates after a while, but rebound itching may also occur.
Several things can cause anal itching, including medications, hemorrhoids, anal fissures, psoriasis or eczema, anxiety or stress, radiation therapy, parasites, fungal infections, pinworms, prolonged use of sweaty underpants, using a washcloth to excess, rubbing very hard with toilet paper, irritation from soap, stool or detergent. Diet can contribute to anal itching especially if you consume alcohol, dairy, caffeinated, spicy or acidic foods.
Pruritis Ani is diagnosed during an anal examination. Your physician will check for hemorrhoids, eczema, fissures or some other abnormality. Your physician may also examine you for a pinworm or a tumor.
After we discover what is causing your anal itching, we can recommend a treatment. For example, if your itching is due to eczema or psoriasis, your physician may recommend a steroid ointment. If you have a fungal infection, the remedy may be an antifungal ointment. A skin infection would require an antibiotic, and internal or external hemorrhoids will be treated with a hemorrhoid treatment.
In addition to the treatments listed above, your physician may advise you to follow the recommendations below:
- Drinking more water and eating more fiber to reduce instances of constipation.
- Changing your sweaty or wet clothes as soon as possible.
- Choosing clean, cotton underwear rather than nylon.
- Taking a shower or a bath every day.
- Making sure that your anus is clean and dry after using the restroom.
- Refraining from using detergent and soap that contains fragrance.
- Refraining from eating spicy or acidic foods.
- Only using unscented toilet paper and wiping gently.
Visit Arizona Colorectal Experts at their new office in Chandler, Arizona. Feel free to schedule an appointment by calling the office at 602-844-5157 or by filling out the contact form on our website.