why does my face itch when i sweat
Your motivation to exercise can be negatively affected if sweating or working out make your face burn. There are a number of common causes of facial hotness, redness or burning during exercise and sweating, and each may have a different solution. Consult your doctor or a dermatologist for a diagnosis before attempting to treat any symptoms relating to your face. Any physical activity that constitutes aerobic exercise will affect your heart rate, circulation and the blood vessels in your face and body. As you work out, your breathing rate and heart rate both increase, and your blood vessels may dilate as blood is pumped more quickly around your body. As the blood vessels in the face are relatively close to the surface of your skin, dilation of these vessels can cause your face to appear red and feel hot or burning.
Rosacea is an incurable skin condition that most commonly affects only the face. A sensation of facial skin burning is a typical symptom of rosacea, which may also cause itching, flaking and dry skin. If you suffer from rosacea, exercise and sweating will exacerbate these symptoms. Rosacea may be controlled with topical and oral medications, and by avoiding overheated or stressful situations (ref 2). Some people find that certain foodstuffs and drinks -- coffee, alcohol and dairy products, for example -- make rosacea symptoms worse. Strange as it may sound, it is possible for you to have an allergy to your own sweat. As sweat is secreted by your forehead and temples during exercise, this sweat could cause an allergic reaction involving facial itching or burning sensations where the sweat touches your skin.
A study reported in the April 1994 issue of the "Journal of Dermatological Science" indicates that patients with the condition cholinergic urticaria -- a type of skin rash, or hives, brought about by over-sensitivity to body heat -- tend to have an allergic reaction to their own sweat. A sensation of facial burning can be caused by excessively hot or cold temperatures when you exercise. Additionally, high or low humidity can cause a red, itchy or burning face. If you exercise in hot weather or in an overheated gym, you will sweat more and your facial blood vessels may rise nearer the surface of your skin, creating a burning sensation.
Direct sun, very dry air and very cold weather can also cause similar symptoms.
I ll suggest something radical for purely anecdotal reasons, but which I believe make a lot of sense: stop using either soap or shampoo when you shower. The reason is simple, your body is built by evolution to use a layer of natural oil and bacteria to protect the skin. The use of soap is a huge leap in hygienics that stopped countless infections, but the simple fact is most of us don t handle raw meat, poop, or soil any more, yet we shower more now than any other time in history. Basically if you re a regular climate-controlled office worker, you have no reason to regularly soap anything but your hands or bum, and at worst you re stripping your natural layer of protection.
Some people will react negatively to this suggest for odor reasons, but the fact is over-washing yourself stimulates the body to over produce oil and skin in an unhealthy cycle. After a week or two adjustment period, your body will be producing less oil and skin, and pure water and a gentle wash cloth will be sufficient for most people. If you still don t like the possibility of smelling even slightly human, you can still buy some scented oils from a good middle-eastern perfume shop. With regards to your original question, it may be possible that soaping less will help your natural layer of oils defend against the itchiness caused by the sweat. or not.
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