Why do my shins itch so much?

I have read quite a few posts on here that sound like the condition I am suffering from. However most people seem to be on r/a drugs or some other form of medication. I am not on any medication, I don't have any skin conditions and my skin is naturally olive. My skin is not dry or flaky anywhere. I just have itchy shins, no where else and it only happens at night, either in the bath or when I get into bed. They are so itchy I have scratched the skin so much I have grazes down both shins all the time, I have been suffering with this for about two years now since I got pregnant with my son. Doctor told me to use e45 or aquearius cream but neither worked. It is driving me crazy!


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20 Replies

  • If your only symptom is itchy shins then it's hugely unlikely that you have any of the auto-immune diseases that the people on here have. There are hundreds of things that affect skin, so I think you have to keep asking your GP.

  • Hi

    It doesn't sound like you have RA, maybe an allergic reaction to something, ask gp maybe ask you need is some antihistamine.

    I had a crazy mad skin flare up when I had my first child, (a boy) it drive me potty, I suffered for months, a locum doctor perscribed piriton, it went away, no reason for it, and it never came back.

    Good luck



  • Hello Jamijo, I had itchy, flakey shins and soles of feet long before RA and still have to take care. The product that has helped me most and stops the itching is "Shea Butter" which I get from purenuffstuff.co.uk/. You only need to apply a little every day - at the beginning maybe two or three times a day. The product consistency varies, sometimes it is grainy, but it will rub in eventually. No more dry and itchy shins for me. I hope it will work for you. Good luck.

  • As helixhelix says, itchy shins could be just about anything. They may just simply be 'itchy shins'!

    However ...... before I was diagnosed and for a while afterwards, the front of my shins did itch a lot. Like you, I scratched till I bled on a nightly basis, tried not to but must have done it when half asleep. I have to say that it was so persistent and so aligned with my joint symptoms and other symptoms that I did come to see it as possibly part of the package.

    I didn't dare tell my doctor - I guess I thought there were more important things to worry about - but I did google it. We all know googling can lead up blind alleys of course ... but what I found suggested that it can mean that the thyroid is under stress. My thyroid levels were low for a while, and my rheumy said that inflammatory arthritis does throw thyroid levels out, even if temporarily.

    Possibly loads of things make the thyroid wobble a bit (not a technical term, I realise!). Maybe pregnancy does, maybe life does! And maybe it is something and nothing.

    My first thought would be to check my diet ..... see if I was getting enough oily fish and vegetables and a wide range of vitamins and minerals. A doctor on the radio yesterday said that he didn't tell his diabetic patients to eat a 'normal diet' any more, because these days what many consider a normal diet is so sub-standard!

  • Ask your doctor for barnum cream I have infected legs which get very itchy at night my nurse prescribed it it is very good think you can buy it over counter too

  • Balneum cream very good I have been treated for ulcerated legs which drive me mad itching at night my nurse recommended it I think you can buy it over counter or get it on perscruption

  • Yes, I use shea butter for all my itchy skin. I also like olive butter. Akoma and Akamuti are both brilliant websites (Akoma is cheaper) and they both sell products that are fairly traded and without additives. I think I've tried almost all the range over the past few years but always go back to Shea and olive. If you have a really sore patch, Akamuti do a Calendula & Chamomile Balm that's fantastic.

    Of course this is all my personal opinion but I put enough toxic pills and potions down my throat, I don't want to rub them in my skin as well.

    Some may disagree with me but rubbing in some jojoba oil and sitting in the sun for a few minutes works wonders.

    I nearly forgot coconut oil. I think (& in my opinion) Coconut Merchant sell the nicest tasting. Eat it raw, cook with it, use it on your hair as a conditioner, take your make up off with it and rub it in.

    I hope one of these might help you, Jamijo. x

  • Hi, don't use E45 cream it contains lanolin and could exacerbate your symptoms. Try something like Epaderm or Diprobase cream which are gentle but really effective. Sounds like a bit of dermatitis to me.

    Good luck!

    Caro xx

  • I have the same problem, i itch my shins so much i draw blood from them, no where else, just my shins, when i get in the bath or in bed or even when i am wearing jeans, when i put lotion on them it burns for 10 minutes, drives me mad, i would love a solution to take this away??

  • Try Eliminating any food or body products that contain Carrageenan.

  • I have been drinking coconut water that contain carrageenan. This could possibly be my problem because I haven't always drank this beverage thanks I will stop it and see what happens thanks for the information.

  • Your symptoms are suspiciously related to a circulation problem in your lower legs. If it started during your pregnancy, then it makes sense since many pregnant women suffer from poor circulation during their pregnancy. The reason why it seems to only occur during bath time or bed time is because the warm water in the bath promotes circulation and so does the act of becoming horizontal when you are going to bed. The sudden promotion of circulation in your legs may translate to a tingly feeling in your lower legs which may seem itchy. This may be further exacerbated by water retention in your lower legs which is a common condition called edema of the legs.

  • I agree with this answer and it makes sense. I was diagnosed with periocarditis. I had edema from poor circulation. All of the sudden my right shin was itching like crazy. I am an ex athlete and never in my life I had itchy skin. I had pericardium removed in 2013 no one was ever able to explain why my right shin was so itchy. Now in 2017 both of them itching like crazy. The feeling like someone is tickling you. Although I don't have an edema now, the whole itching thing is heads up about poor circulation.

  • I agree. Last night my calves were achy and felt like I had restless legs and this morning my shins were super itchy and I rubbed them madly for like 5 minutes.

  • It's because of your calf muscles!! I kid you not!!! I have the same problem I had a massage and the massage therapist told me about this!!

  • My shins have itched badly for two days. Two days ago I went for a massive bike ride. I'll try massaging.

  • Ditto. I have been on a four day walking holiday and my lower shins itched so much I drew blood. Also my ankles became slightly swollen.

  • Try eliminating all foods that contain Carageenan. I experienced all of the above starting out of the blue 4yrs ago. Im talking scratch your shins off itching and nightly all over tickle itching. I have been on elimation diet for about a year and still wasn't finding any food triggers. A co-worker mentioned I always drink my coffee with flavored creamer & that I should read about/eliminate Carageenan. I eliminated Carageenan a month ago, and all itching, eczemas, and acne has cleared.

  • I have itchy lower legs from a pinched nerve in my back. nothing had really worked when I have a nerve flare up and all I want to do is scratch the skin off my legs until they bleed. I don't like using steroid creams or products tested on animals and full of chemicals. Foderma serum has great ingredients and it actually works so much better than the other products i would rather not put on my skin. this has been such a god send. it gives me so much relief instantly.

  • I have had this problem for years and it is sometimes unbearable, Always at night. The only relief I have found is to wrap freezer blocks in kitchen towel and place them on my shins. It takes around 15 mins but it relieves the unbearable itching. Over the years I have tried every conceivable cream and ointment, but nothing helped at all, just the cold blocks. Somebody mentioned poor circulation...............perhaps! I have always been quite active, ice skating and suchlike.........then last year (now retired) I got an unprovoked DVT so now I walk 2 miles a day........I have asked Doctors over the years about this dreadful lower leg itching, but frankly, they don't seem to be overly interested in it and certainly do not understand how distressing it is when you will do anything to stop it.

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