Q:

How can you relieve rectal itching?

A:

Quick Answer

Relieve itching of the rectal and anal area by taking over-the-counter or prescription medications, cleansing and drying the area, wearing cotton underwear and avoiding scratching, as recommended by Mayo Clinic. Effective treatment options vary depending on the underlying cause of the itching.

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Full Answer

Apply a hydrocortisone-containing over-the-counter ointment or cream in small amounts around the anus to soothe itching and reduce inflammation, as instructed by Mayo Clinic. Other options include zinc oxide ointments and antihistamines for symptoms that worsen at night. If a parasite is the cause of the itching, the doctor may recommend an antiparasitic medication that can cure the condition in one or two doses. If itching continues for more than two months, consult a doctor for proper evaluation.

After having a bowel movement, gently cleanse the anus using a wet washcloth or unscented bath tissue, and avoid using soap or scrubbing the area, as recommended by Mayo Clinic. Use a hairdryer or dry washcloth to dry the area, and apply cornstarch if desired. Avoid scratching the area or exposing it to irritants, such as deodorants, which may worsen the itching. Wear loose-fitting clothing and cotton underwear to keep the area dry, and eat a fiber-rich diet if experiencing diarrhea or soft stools.

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