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Learn about your armpit itch, including causes, treatment options and remedies. Or get a personalized analysis of your armpit itch from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

Armpit Itch Checker

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Your Armpit Itch May Also be Known as:
Armpit is itchy
Armpit scratchiness
Armpit scratching
Armpit scratchy
Axilla itchiness
Axilla itching
Axilla itchy

Armpit Itch Symptoms

Odor is not the only issue of the armpit. When you just cannot stop scratching under the arm, you have armpit itch. The condition can be both uncomfortable and awkward to deal with. We combat the armpit's propensity for perspiration with deodorant and antiperspirant and the area is often shaved to eliminate hair.

Armpit itch may result from a variety of factors and presents itself with the following symptoms:

The armpits are in a tricky spot. Nestled between the arm, shoulder, and chest, they are more of a location than a body part. The sweat gland for the underarm is located in the armpit causing the production of the majority of our body odor and also perspiration. A large number of nerves are located in the armpit making it sensitive and sometimes ticklish. The combination of its warmth and dampness and the frequent presence of body hair makes them a prime candidate for itching. Under many circumstances, armpit itch symptoms are a product of the environment, but other causes are more significant and warrant different treatments.

Armpit Itch Causes Overview

Sometimes, even the best intentions can lead to unanticipated consequences. The way we treat our armpits can often lead a variety of symptoms, including armpit itch. Other times, however, there is more to the problem than basic bodily functions and reactions. In those cases, it is important to analyze the armpit itch symptoms to best determine the cause.

Environmental causes:

  • Trauma: Irritation to the armpit can lead to itchiness. Improper shaving or ill-fitting bras can cause such irritation.
  • Hot/Cold: The skin reacts to prolonged exposure to either hot or cold dry air. Armpit itch symptoms can be the manifestation of this reaction,
  • Allergies: Certain substances can cause a skin reaction that results in armpit itch. Laundry detergents, deodorants, or clothing materials are all known to cause itchiness.
  • Parasitic: Parasites are tiny organisms that live and feed on the body. Scabies and lice are common parasites known the effect the armpit and cause itchiness.

Inflammatory causes:

  • Infection: While bacteria are normally found on the body, sometimes harmful bacteria can penetrate the skin and cause infection, inflammation, and itchiness. Armpit itch can result from a variety of bacteria including yeast, MRSA, and other fungi.
  • Autoimmune: Disorders resulting from the body attacking itself are considered autoimmune. Psoriasis is an example of an autoimmune disorder that causes armpit itch symptoms.

Systemic disease causes:

  • Metabolic: The body is accustomed to operating in a specific way. When daily processes are disrupted by conditions like axillary lymphadenopathy, armpit itch can occur.

Top 6 Armpit Itch Causes

  1. 1.Allergic Contact Dermatitis of the Armpit

    Allergic contact dermatitis is a condition in which the skin becomes irritated and inflamed following physical contact with an allergen. Common products known to cause allergic dermatitis include plants, metals, soap, fragrance, and cosmetics.

    You can safely treat this condition on at home. The main treatment for this disease is to avoid the substance that triggers the skin inflammation. Moisturizer can also be helpful to provide relief for your inflamed skin.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    armpit redness, armpit itch
    Symptoms that always occur with allergic contact dermatitis of the armpit:
    armpit redness
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment
  2. 2.Folliculitis

    Folliculitis is a common skin problem where hair follicles are infected by bacteria or fungi.

    You can take take care of this at home by using a topical antibacterial or benzoyl peroxide. Also, reduce exposures to irritants like shaving, contaminated water, and other chemicals.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    small armpit lump, pink or red armpit bump, armpit itch, armpit bump leaking yellow or milky fluid
    Symptoms that always occur with folliculitis:
    small armpit lump
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment
  3. 3.Scabies

    Scabies is a highly contagious skin infection caused by mites that produce an itchy rash on the body.

    You and those you have been in contact with should visit a primary care physician within the next 24 hours, where a diagnosis can be made. Treatment with medical creams will kill the mites and their eggs. Please limit contact with other persons during this time.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    feeling itchy or tingling all over, butt itch, scrotal itch, penis itch, penile redness
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor

    Armpit Itch Checker

    Take a quiz to find out why you’re having armpit itch.

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  4. 4.Scabies

    Scabies is a highly contagious skin infection caused by mites that produce an itchy rash on the body.

    You and those you have been in contact with should visit a primary care physician within the next 24 hours, where a diagnosis can be made. Treatment with medical creams will kill the mites and their eggs. Please limit contact with other persons during this time.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    vaginal itch or burning, vulvovaginal redness, feeling itchy or tingling all over, butt itch, elbow itch
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  5. 5.Scabies

    Scabies is a highly contagious skin infection caused by mites that produce an itchy rash on the body.

    You and those you have been in contact with should visit a primary care physician within the next 24 hours, where a diagnosis can be made. Treatment with medical creams will kill the mites and their eggs. Please limit contact with other persons during this time.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    vaginal itch or burning, vulvovaginal redness, feeling itchy or tingling all over, butt itch, wrist itch
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  6. 6.Scabies

    Scabies is a highly contagious skin infection caused by mites that produce an itchy rash on the body.

    You and those you have been in contact with should visit a primary care physician within the next 24 hours, where a diagnosis can be made. Treatment with medical creams will kill the mites and their eggs. Please limit contact with other persons during this time.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    feeling itchy or tingling all over, penile redness, penis itch, groin itch, scrotal itch
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor

Armpit Itch Treatments and Relief

Usually, being only itchy does not raise any alarms, but that does not mean that it should not be treated. Given the wide range of potential causes of armpit itch, taking the condition seriously will help dictate the best course of action to relieve the symptoms. Switching deodorants may be all that is required, or the diagnosis and advice of a medical professional could be necessary.

Contact your doctor if the following accompany armpit itch:

With such a wide range of armpit itch symptoms and causes, self-diagnosis may be a challenge and providing adequate treatment could be equally as challenging. That being said, the most common causes of armpit itch symptoms are treatable at home. It is time to call your doctor though when basic treatments do not work or do not seem appropriate.

At-home treatments:

  • Warm Water Compression: Applying a compress soaked with warm water can help speed recovery from boils.
  • Moisturizer: Repeated applications of lotion to the affect areas can help limit armpit itch symptoms caused by dryness.
  • Hygiene: Ironically, bathing less can sometimes be the cure. Frequent bathing can dry the skin or repeatedly introduce irritants to the skin. Avoiding certain deodorants or soaps may also help. Changing clothes frequently and washing them at high temperatures will help eliminate parasites.
  • Over-the-Counter Medications: Creams or ointments designed to treat fungal infections are available for use.

Professional treatments:

  • Prescription Medications: Oral antifungal medications or antibiotics may be necessary for more significant causes of armpit itch such as MRSA. Medication also exists to kill parasites.

At a minimum, armpit itch is an annoying nuisance. At worst, it is a sign of a far more serious condition requiring advanced medical treatment. Treating your body right and continued good hygiene practices are often positive steps towards relieving the itch, but, it is always important to remember that advanced cases of armpit itch symptoms require input from a medical professional.

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Armpit Itch

  • Q.How badly is your armpit itching?
  • Q.How long ago did your armpit first start to itch?
  • Q.Do you have a rash?
  • Q.Are you itchy all over?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, check our armpit itch symptom checker.

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Armpit Itch Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced armpit itch have also experienced:

    • 21% Skin Changes on Armpit
    • 9% Armpit Redness
    • 5% Anal Itching
  • People who have experienced armpit itch had symptoms persist for:

    • 40% Over a Month
    • 18% Less Than a Week
    • 17% Two Weeks to a Month
  • People who have experienced armpit itch were most often matched with:

    • 26% Allergic Contact Dermatitis of the Armpit
    • 2% Folliculitis
    • 1% Scabies
  • Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

Armpit Itch Checker

Take a quiz to find out why you’re having armpit itch.

Take a quiz