Itchy From Head to Toe
(Upstate NY USA)
First off let me say I don't know if any of these occurrences are related, but I'm itchy from head to toe!
Every year, first of August, my husband and I go to Jamaica to a 5 star resort hotel (very classy). Every year we get bit by sand fleas, and every year I vow to bring some Deep Woods Off for the next year we come. This year I forgot... again!
The hotel sold some off brand name and I was afraid to try it.
Boy was I ever sorry. This year I must have had 60+ bites all over my arms and legs - non stop itching.
Though I did bring some Gold Bond itch lotion. That helped get me through most of the 7 nights without too much scratching.
One night at one of the bars which was 100 feet from the ocean, while sitting there sipping my rum punch and enjoying the the live entertainment (I was wearing sandals), I felt a very sharp pain in my toe, as if someone had hit my toe with a hammer - Hard. It was the toe next to my big toe.
No I wasn't drunk. I was still sipping my first, still more than half full.
The pain was enough to make me stop and actually look at it to see what had happened. Alas the bar was too dimly lit to see it properly. No blood, but hurt if I touched it, so I stopped touching it and went back to my drink and show.
An hour later hubby and I walk back to our room and there was some pain but could walk with no difficulty.
We got back to our room and I discovered that my toe was pitch black and slightly swollen and the pain on a scale of 1-10 (10 being unbearable) was a 3. Still no blood or anything I or my husband could see... didn't think much of it and went to bed.
The next morning the toe was as normal as could be as if it didn't happen at all, pain free. Bizarre, I know. Any ideas?
Anyway we came back to the States (only stayed 8 days), and I was miserable from all my bites. Hubby had a grand total of 4 bites on his left shoulder. Yes they were almost the size of quarters but said they didn't itch.
Me the other hand looked like I had some horrible disease. Needless to say I wore thin long pants so I didn't scare everyone at the airports & planes.
First night home I tried rubbing alcohol. Relief was short lived about 90 mins. Then I tried organic apple cider vinegar, still to no avail 60 mins.
The third night, on the verge of calling my MD, my friend gave me some calamine lotion. The bottle said for relief from poison Ivy, poison sumac... nothing about insect bites. Tried it anyway, I was desperate for relief.
So used half a bottle and became the pink lady (as my daughter called me lol) Let myself dry really well about 45 mins (didn't want pink sheets) and went to bed. And it worked. My itchiness went from 10 and off the charts down to about a 3, thank goodness!
Now to the reason I'm writing this mini novel. Two weeks ago I went to visit my girlfriend (same one with the calamine lotion). She proceeds to tell me she had just gotten over with having bedbugs (cringe). Her daughter got bit pretty good on her upper thigh and just below her ear and neck a good 2 inch pink spot in both directions.
The daughter then takes a quilt out of a garbage bag and shakes it out to put on her air mattress there in the living room where I was. I immediately felt something jump on me so I said good bye to my friend and came and prayed I didn't bring them home with me. Hubby would kill me if they got on him. We still sleep in the same bed together.
A few days later. I was sitting at my desk and starting itching ... a lot. It felt like alot of little pinches, other times it felt like something was crawling on me but to look and see nothing and still have it itch without reason. Even my hair felt like something was crawling in it.
I was trying to read something online and felt something crawling on my cheekbone so I rubbed it hard instead of scratch and I felt something roll against my skin. Looked at my fingers to see what looked like dirt. So how does dirt crawl I wondered.
A few minutes later I felt something in my scalp. Lucky for me I had my white comb handy at my desk.
With the intent of scratching my scalp with the fine teeth end for relief and when I finished scratching and looked at the comb, to my horror I saw a black bug caught in the teeth, grabbed a kleenex to take a better look and squished
it not meaning to, though didn't want it to hop back from where he came.
I could still feel something biting my legs, shoulders and neck.
My daughter came and sat on my lap (yes she still does that at 22 from time to time) and as soon as her cheeks hit my leg I felt something RUN up my leg from mid calf to my groin. She got up and left a few mins later but I could still feel something roaming around my underwear** Gross!
So I got up and got in the shower. First thing I did was wet my hair and lather up the Head & Shoulders for dry scalp with almond oil, thinking 90% of the bugs out there hate soap/shampoo and any kind and oil they would at least get off me at any rate.
Though as I was thoroughly scrubbing my head (was slightly freaked out)I felt something BITING the folds of fat belly that meet my groin area (pubic hairline).
So with soapy hands I washed there. Then I see on my stark white shower walls a black bug about a quarter inch in length, no wings, didn't even see legs though I know they were there as I felt them crawl on me. It looked like a wood splinter that you get under your skin. Just like the one in my comb.
He didn't even try to get away, so I squished him and he left his imprint behind on the white shower wall... till the water hit that spot.
Even now as I'm typing this, I feel little pinches, some feel like a needle, or tiny electricity stabs and, scratching away and my scalp doesn't want to feel left out so that adds to the mix.
I have baby fine blonde hair, few inches past my shoulders and some times a stray hair will happen to feel like it wants to touch my face and scare me into thinking its a creepy crawly and I scratch innocent skin and that hurts. And sometimes when I finish a scratch session a few mins later it still hurts tenderly.
Sometimes I can actually go out to eat with my hubby and not embarrass us too badly. Or I can go a few hours and not feel the urgent need to scratch at all. But that only last for an hour or 2 then back to the insanity.
This present condition has been going on now for the past 3 weeks.
As it is I already take 2000mg of garlic and 1000mg of vitamin C daily as per Dr's orders and have been for the last 7 years or better. I am in my early 50's and female and live in upstate NY.
I'm calling my doctor in the morning. Oh yes we have one cat who is 91 in cat years. She has been on a monthly flea regimen since May of this year and just had her last dose for this year (hopefully) 2 weeks ago.
So, that's my tale of woe. Any ideas of what might be happening here?
Sorry I was unable to get back to you sooner. What did the doctor have to say? Were you able to identify any of the bugs you've been dealing with?
It sounds like you were bitten by something on the toe while you were in Jamaica. It's possible that there is something in your system as a result that is causing you the sensation of being itchy from head to toe.
Of course, the sand fleas will do that as you well know. I've heard that Skin So Soft (by Avon) is excellent for keeping the sand fleas away (remember that for your next trip - get a bottle and put it in your suitcase NOW so you don't go through this again).
I DON'T think it is all in your head, but in fact, some of your itchy feelings may well be your imagination. If you are anything like me, just thinking about lice makes my head start to itch.
Since you had so many encounters with various critters it would be rather remarkable if you weren't feeling creepy crawlies all over you when you stopped to think about it!
Obviously, though, there were definitely some bugs that you have seen, so it's certainly not all psychological. :)
Taking the garlic is always good for helping to get rid of bugs you may have picked up internally.
You may need an antihistamine if you still have residual toxins in your system from whatever bit you in Jamaica.
Personally, I'd give myself a basic cleanse with Herbal Fiberblend
just to help the detox process along as quickly and effectively as possible.
You may also want to try a soak in warm bath with epsom salts, sea salt, or organic apple cider vinegar. These are often helpful in different itchy situations, particularly when you are itchy from head to toe.
Do let us know what the doctor said and how you are doing now. To your good health!