You can often do simple things yourself to ease an itchy bottom (anus). See a GP if the itching doesn't stop.
You can ask the pharmacist if they have a private area where you can speak. They can suggest:
An itchy bottom that's worse at night is often caused by threadworms, especially in children.
Children under 2, and pregnant and breastfeeding women, can't usually take medicine for threadworms – see your GP, midwife or health visitor instead.
A GP will try to work out the cause of your itching. They might need to check your bottom (rectal examination).
Depending on the cause, the GP might:
Tell the GP immediately if a medicine, cream or ointment makes the itching worse.
You can also go to a sexual health clinic if you think your itchy bottom might be caused by a sexually transmitted infection (STI) – for example, if you've had unprotected sex. They can provide the same treatments you would get from a GP.
Many sexual health clinics also offer a walk-in service, where you don't need an appointment. They'll often get test results quicker than a GP.
There's not always a clear cause of an itchy bottom. If it gets better quickly, it might have been caused by something that doesn't need treatment, like sweating a lot in hot weather.
If it lasts for longer, you might be able to get an idea of the cause from any other symptoms you have. But don't self-diagnose – see a GP if you're worried.
|Other symptoms with itchy bottom||Possible causes|
|Gets worse at night, worms in poo (they look like small pieces of thread)||threadworms, especially in children|
|Lumps, bright red blood and pain when pooing||piles (haemorrhoids)|
|Poo leaking or pooing you can't control||diarrhoea or incontinence|
|Sores, swelling or irritation||fungal infection, STI like genital warts|
|Itching elsewhere on the body||skin condition, such as eczema or psoriasis|
|While using long-term medication||side effect of steroid creams, some gels and ointments for anal fissure, and peppermint oil|
It's unusual for an itchy anus on its own to be related to something more serious. But in rare cases, it may be a sign of something like anal or bowel cancer, so it's important to get it checked by your GP.