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If she has dementia, this is a common stage and hard to handle. A doctor may be of some help, but it tends to be a compulsive behavior. It's actually quite common.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) often causes this as well. Keeping her skin as moist and as comfortable as possible can help, but she may scratch anyway. She probably should be checked for allergies, and you could try different soaps, detergents and skin products, too. There could be a physical cause you can't see.
Carol
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Thank you I will check with her doctor about the allergies and other possibilities.
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Eucerin skin products and Aveeno products for washing and moisturizing skin are valuable when working with sensitive skin conditions, including for soothing. Eucerin has two I buy, one is called their "calming and itching cream," I believe. After it dries on your Mom's skin, sprinkle a little powder that also soothes itching and helps calm skin. Before she starts itching try a cool towel (with ice water poured on) with a little witch hazel to blanket the area she itches and to help soothe her skin. Use cooler, rather than warm or hot water when showering. Warm water can trigger skin discomfort for some individuals, including me, I've learned. Cool water has the opposite effect. Occasionally a Benadryl type cream, or other comparable brand works for the worst cases of itching, though I would only use those creams on her arms, not face. Good luck. It is really difficult to watch and painful for the person who is experiencing it also. I agree that a doctor's involvement may be helpful though they may not be able to pin it down, either. At least there are prescriptions that can help soothe the itch. Good luck in helping your Mom!
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my mom reached up and goughed her face really bad in her sleep, i went back to my house while she napped,( few years ago, i had my own apt) i went in her room tocheck on her and her face and nails were bloody and looked like something out of a horror movie! i freaked.. i thought my brother had gone in and attacked her.i was aon my way to graba baseball bat to beat my brothers head in when she ywned and reached up and her fingernails were in the exact same place the cuts on her face were, i realized she did it to herself in her sleep. well, that was it, i was cut her ingernails or tape some oven mitts on her hands, she wouldnt let me. since it happened only once, i didnt push it.
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