The Misery Of "Leg Itch"

Does anyone else suffer from this minor misery?

Leg Itch happens to me a couple of times a year, and it’s very unpleasant. Usually at night, my shins start itching desperately, and nothing will do but an orgiastic bout of scratching that leaves them red and bloodied and stinging. I’ve had Leg Itch last for weeks, or only days. Neither season nor weather nor humidifier nor cool bath nor oatmeal bath nor changing detergents nor moisturizing lavishly nor switching cleansers nor shaving nor not shaving nor sun nor lack of sun not anti-itch cream has had one iota of effect on serious Leg Itch. (Benadryl and prescription cortisone spray can, it is true, help temporarily.)

Is it a serious medical problem? No ma’am. But it does, as they say, affect one’s quality of life, not least because it can mean covering one’s unsightly gams in warm weather. And while I’m normally strong-willed enough, the lure of scratching Leg Itch induces a wild recklessness that has me damning the consequences for that one, blissful, much-regretted moment of raking my nails down the burning expanse of skin.

The Internet tells me that Leg Itch is apparently not uncommon, and sites are full of the commonsensical advice I’ve tried. Could Leg Itch be stress-related? It seems like I’ve had it when I was happy and relaxed, too. Sometimes I wish we could go to a Medieval Doctor, who’d say something like, “Oh, yeah. There are some invisible imps dancing on your legs. Happens. They’ll go away.” This, at least, I could understand. As it is, I have to fall back on the only obvious explanation: Voodoo doll.

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