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What Does It Mean When Your Right Eye Jumps? - Causes and Cures
Last updated December 7, 2017, originally updated March 20, 2013

By L. Carr, Associate Editor and Featured Columnist

According to old superstition, when your right palm itches
it means you’ll be getting some money in the near future.
If it’s your left, watch out – you stand to lose cash soon.
Don’t scratch your right palm, they say, or the lucky cash
won’t materialize. However, scratch away if your left hand
is giving you problems.

But what happens if you’re not the least bit superstitious
and your palms are itching with no money issues in your
life? What’s the real reason your palms are giving you
problems? Itchy palms are a symptom of a number of
different disorders. You may be able to manage an
occasional case of itchy palms by applying some cream but
if the itch persists and it is interfering with your everyday
life, it’s time to take action.

Causes of Itchy Palms

A case of itching palms could be due to a variety of disease
conditions. The most common culprits are as follows:

•        Eczema - dyshidrosis or palmoplantar dermatitis is a
form of eczema that is characterized by itchy palms and
itchy feet, with the sides of the fingers also itching. The
itchiness with eczema gets worse during the night and
when the weather is warm.

•        Food allergies – If you are allergic to certain kinds
of food such as peanuts, seafood, soy, or dairy then
itchiness on the palms is one common symptom. The soles
of your feet will also be itchy.

•        Carpal tunnel syndrome – a condition caused by
compression of the median nerve most usually caused by
repetitive activities such as too much typing. Itchiness or
numbness in the palms may be accompanied by pain in the

•        Primary biliary cirrhosis – one of the earliest signs of
this bile duct disorder is itching palms or itchiness on the
soles of the feet. The itchiness may be worse at night and
flares up at regular intervals throughout the day.

Treatments for Itchy Palms

The treatment for itchy palms depends on the condition
that is causing the problem. For example, Ursodeoxycholic
acid helps treat primary biliary cirrhosis. Antihistamines are
also used. Antihistamines may also be useful for treating
the itchy symptoms of allergies and eczema.

In the case of carpal tunnel syndrome, a combination of
NSAIDs and corticosteroids are often used. But pain
medication and antihistamines cause side effects and may
have dependency issues. Are there any natural remedies
that help relieve the itch?

We looked at the recent scientific evidence for several
natural remedies reported to relieve itchy palms. Here are
the top 7 remedies for your irritated palms.

Elimination Diet for Allergies Causing Itchy Palms

If your palms start itching after eating certain foods, or
you suspect an allergy is contributing to the itchiness, try
the elimination diet in order to identify the problematic
foods and resolve the itching problem.

According to a 1998 study from the University of Texas
Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, you start with a
highly restricted diet including foods that are not
commonly known to cause allergies such as turkey, rice,
and yams, then reintroduce foods slowly and watch for a
trigger reaction that affects the palms.

You may want to exclude rice from the set of "safe" foods
if you have food allergies. Studies such as a 2011 report
from Soonchunhyang University School of Medicine in
South Korea are reporting an increase in sensitivities to
rice allergen.]

2. Possible Treatments for Food Allergies Causing Itchy

It is possible that the digestive enzyme bromelain and
other proteolytic enzymes could help treat allergic
reactions to certain foods, which results in itchy palms.
Some experts believe these enzymes hold promise but
there is no concrete evidence for their effectiveness.

3. Yoga to Treat Itchy Palms Caused by Carpal Tunnel

Carpal tunnel syndrome is an aggravation of the ligaments
and the tendons in the wrist’s carpal tunnel which results
in tingling and numbness in the palms and fingers.
Scientists claim hatha yoga is effective against carpal
tunnel syndrome.

In a 1998 study from the University of Pennsylvania
School of Medicine, Philadelphia 42 people suffering from
carpal tunnel syndrome were randomly assigned to a
course of yoga instruction or wearing a wrist splint for
eight weeks.

Results showed the yoga exercise was more effective than
wearing the splint.

4. Itchy Palms from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Does Magnet
Therapy Work?

In addition to yoga, magnet therapy is touted as a cure for
the itchiness of the palms in carpal tunnel syndrome. Thirty
people with carpal tunnel syndrome received treatment
with a real or fake static magnet in a 2002 study from
Family & Preventive Medicine, Oklahoma City.

Long-lasting benefits were seen by those using the
magnets as treatment. However, benefits were also seen in
the placebo group, casting doubt on the effectiveness of
magnet therapy for itchy palms caused by carpal tunnel

5. Chinese Herbal Medicine for Treating Itchy Palms
Caused by Eczema

If eczema causes uncomfortable itchy palms, try a Chinese
herbal remedy. In a 1992 study by the Royal Free Hospital
and School of Medicine, London, UK a traditional
combination of Paeonia lactiflora, Potentilla chinensis,
Ledebouriella seseloides, Tribulus terrestris, Akebia
clematidis, Schizonepeta tenuifolia, Rehmannia glutinosa,
Dictamnus dasycarpus, Lophatherum gracile, and
Glycyrrhiza uralensis was significantly better than placebo
at treating the symptoms of eczema.

6. Use Topical Creams on Itchy Palms

One popular way to relieve the discomfort of itchy palms is
to use some kind of topical cream. Creams made using
extracts of licorice, chamomile, and calendula are routinely
used to treat eczema.

In a 2000 study from ASTA Medica AG, Frankfurt, Germany
chamomile cream was better than 0.5% hydrocortisone
cream. A 2003 study from Mazandaran University of
Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran tested 1 percent and 2 percent
licorice cream on people with eczema and discovered that
the licorice cream was more effective than placebo for
treating itchiness and that the 2 percent preparation was
better than the 1 percent version.

7. St. John's Wort for Treating Itchiness

St. John’s wort may be useful for treating other conditions
aside from depression. It contains hypericin, an anti-
inflammatory substance that has potential use for soothing
itchiness. In a 2003 study from Freiburg University Clinic,
Freiburg, Germany an extract of St. John’s wort in a
topical cream was tested against placebo cream and found
to be more effective at reducing itchiness than placebo.

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Rice is a common cause of food allergies which
can cause itchy palms.
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