I recently read on a mommy forum that I subscribe to about a woman asking for help with an ailment that I knew far too well. She was 28 weeks pregnant, and suffering from PUPPPS. If you have never heard of this, you are not alone. When I was 31 weeks pregnant, and scratching my skin off, my doctor at the time stared blankly at me as I described the agony I was dealing with. Basically, PUPPPs (pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy) is a benign, itchy, bumpy rash, that starts near the umbilical cord, and spreads to the extremities. In other words, you have the worst case of poison oak/ivy on your entire body. The itching is relentless, and I spent many nights crying at 4am, begging for some sort of relief. Calamine lotion doesn’t work. Benadryl doesn’t come close to raging against this beast of an itch. The only thing the doctor could do was prescribe a topical cream with steroids in it (um, how can that be good for the baby?), and a look of sympathy as she states that I only have 8 weeks left. Oh, if she could only switch me places, then she’d see how infuriating that statement was to a woman in my position.
Since I was finding no relief from things that were supposed to help, I took to the internet to research any natural remedies for PUPPPs I could find to help with this nuisance of an imposter that would be staying with me until my baby decided to put in an appearance. I’m all about natural remedies, and I was hoping to come across something the would cure, or at least alleviate me from this torture. I did come across a couple mentions of Pine Tar Soap and Dandelion Root capsules, so seeing as though I had nothing to lose at this point, I immediately bought them, and gave it a try.
Grandpa’s Brand Pine Tar Soap is a natural, vegetable based soap. First thing I noticed – It smelled pretty weird (kinda like a campfire in bar soap form), but if I had to plug my nose while washing in order to have any sense of comfort, so be it. After a couple of showers, I could feel relief immediately after the shower. It was the summer in Brooklyn, so it was sweltering (on top of the fact of being pregnant), so I took cold showers, and used a loofah to scrub my skin with the Pine Tar Soap. Taking multiple showers a day (whenever the itching got out of control), and pairing it with Dandelion Root capsules, calamine lotion and Vitamin E oil, made living with PUPPPs for the remainder of my pregnancy as manageable as it was going to be.
For those of you suffering from the wrath of the pregnancy gods, and its unfair use of rashes at the already most uncomfortable time of the process, I hope you can find some solace and relief from this advice.
Did you have PUPPPs while pregnant? What did you use to manage the itchiness?
For a bit more information on Dandelion Root, you can go HERE.