You’ve grown blissfully into pregnancy, but where is that “glow” you’ve heard people talk about? Instead, you look like a hormonally ravaged teen.
To be exact you are itchy from a rash coming up around the stretch marks on your belly button.
Pregnancy comes with a myriad of changes with your skin not immune to hormonal changes. The good news is that the itch is harmless and subsides after birth.
Let us look at this flaring skin condition that pops up during pregnancy and how to manage it.
Characteristics of itchy belly button
Rashes on the skin around the navel system cause the belly button itchiness. It’s also caused by an infection around the belly button. An itchy belly can drive a woman insane.
It causes distraction and scratching. This itch is common during the fifth and sixth months of pregnancy and is common with most women.
Causes of itchy belly button during pregnancy
1. Hormonal changes– A surge in the levels of estrogen causes itching of the belly button
2. Weight gain– During pregnancy, the uterus expands making the skin dry and itchy
3. The skin and body are expanding to accommodate your baby. The stretching comes at a time when the skin is moisture-deprived; hence, the dry patches of skin tend to be itchy and uncomfortable.
4. Uterine pressure -Fetal growth is so rapid that it expands beyond the normal position. The expansion put pressure on the abdomen. In the second trimester, the uterus no longer fits the pelvis.
It sits between navel and breast. In the third trimester, the uterus expands beyond the pubic area to the bottom of the ribs.
The growth of the baby and uterus exerts pressure on the belly button. Intense pressure can cause pain, itchiness, and discomfort.
5. Contact dermatitis – This is an allergic reaction to foreign substances or chemicals, like harsh soap.
6. Stretching and diastasis recti – The growth of the baby and weight gain stretches the skin and muscle around the belly.
The stretching causes diastasis recti, which is a condition, caused when rectus abdominal muscle or abs separate into halves.
The diastasis recti don’t cause navel pain, rather the separation reduces the number of tissues between uterus and belly button.
This increases sensitivity to pressure in the area. Skin stretching causes localized pain and itchiness around the bellybutton.
7. Popped belly button – The pooped belly button occurs when pregnancy pushes a woman upward button bell outward. The pooped belly increases sensitivity and pain.
8. An umbilical hernia – An umbilical hernia is not as dangerous as it sounds. This condition occurs when pressure pushes the umbilical cavity. Once the bowel is trapped, it becomes inflamed and painful.
Other kinds of hernias occur due to increased uterine pressure. A hernia shouldn’t be operated on before scrutiny; however, some hernias can cause strangulation and incarceration. Hence, some doctors will recommend surgery.
9. Navel piercing – It’s advisable for women to remove navel rings during pregnancy some piercing can be pulling on the skin causing it to tear.
A torn belly button may lead to infection. Fresh piercing may be healing hence ask the doctor to remove it.
10. Eczema – Atopic dermatitis can make the skin around the navel itchy or become red.
11. Yeast infection – Candida yeast causes candidiasis. This is characterized by itchy navel, red rash, and white discharge.
Remedies of itchy belly button
- When the belly button itchiness caused by eczema, there isn’t a cure. In this case, it’s advisable to wash the navel with a gentle soap, rinse and dry the belly button.
- Moisturize the outie belly button twice a day
- Massage- A belly massage can soothe the navel pain, but this technique is it’s ineffective if the cause of the itch is an umbilical hernia. Massage done by a partner or professional helps relieve lower back and pelvic pain.
- Aloe Vera gel- soothes sensitive skin
- Heating pads
- The Calamine lotion – this lotion works wonders even on tough cases
- Vitamin E oil- this smooth oil is very healing, it works well with sore nipples after pregnancy.
- Oatmeal Soaked with warm water – An oatmeal bath with hot water relieves pain in dry skin.
- Humidifier- This prevents the skin from drying out.
- Don’t use ice cubes, cubes aggravate the pain or the navel sensitivity
- Kindly Visit the doctor when: the skin is inflamed; cracked and red in color or; when the pain is severe or sharp.
Dangers of itchy belly button
- PUPP P-Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques of Pregnancy – This is a skin rash resembling hives and causes itching of the belly. It’s very discomforting during pregnancy.
- Prurigo – This skin condition looks like bug bits but may turn into small cuts.
- Pemphigoid Gestationis – This is a rare condition that appears as hives but later becomes large blistering lesions. They are common around the belly buttons but spreads into other places.