Unexpected Drinks That Could Make Your Butt Itch

An itch in your butt can be a sign of many things. Called pruritus ani, which is the Latin term for an "itchy anus," this condition could be caused by dermatological issues, infections, or underlying diseases like Crohn's and irritable bowel syndrome (secondary pruritis ani), or less obvious causes (primary pruritis ani), per Cleveland Clinic

If you've ever eaten spicy food, suffered from constipation or diarrhea, or maybe forgot to wipe properly down there, you're probably familiar with the often embarrassing need to scratch your rear while out in public. Turns out, these are not the only reasons your butt itches. What you drink could be to blame too. 

Everything from dairy, caffeinated and decaffeinated drinks like coffee and tea, energy drinks, and cola to citrus or tomato-based beverages and alcohol can cause your butt to itch. As explained by dermatologist and vice chair of research at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Dr. Brian Kim (via Health), "Maybe you have an unusual diet — like it's very acidic, or you eat [or drink] a lot of a certain irritant." Now that you know which beverages could be making you want to circumspectly slip your hands down the back of your pants and scratch, you may be wondering exactly how these drinks cause an itchy behind.

Certain drinks could be causing anal leakage or acidic contact

Some of the beverages you're drinking could loosen the anal muscle or cause exaggerated anal reflexes, per Medical News Today. Or, they might cause diarrhea and frequent toilet visits (and wiping) that could be making your anal area sensitive. Drinks that cause anal leakage or diarrhea include caffeinated beverages, spicy drinks, and dairy. 

It is also possible that some unexpected drinks are causing intolerance in your digestive tract, leading to acidic substances coming into contact with the sensitive skin around your anus. As shared by New York City-based registered dietitian specializing in the management of digestive symptoms and diseases, Tamara Duker Freuman (via U.S. News), this is particularly true in the case of lactose or fructose intolerance. 

"When sugars are not absorbed in the small intestine, they continue to travel intact to the colon where they are greeted by a teeming — and hungry — community of bacteria." Lactic acid can form when these bacteria ferment the unabsorbed carbs, and when this acid is passed through the stool, it can result in irritation. "As a result, people who are lactose or fructose intolerant may experience anal itching or burning several hours after consuming lactose or fructose," explained Freuman. Alcoholic beverages can also have a similar effect because of their acidic content. 

An elimination diet could help identify your trigger drinks

As with most cases of loose stools and/or anal irritation, you can try skipping your morning coffee/tea, dairy, or alcohol for a few days and see if this alleviates the problem. You may also want to cut back on the energy drink before working out. Eliminate whatever unexpected drinks you can think of, and see if the itch goes away. 

A butt that itches can not only be a source of great discomfort but it can also cause you to feel extremely self-conscious when you're out and about with other people. You may also want to read up on all the other possible causes for an itchy behind — like hemorrhoids, yeast infections, pinkworms, psoriasis, anal eczema, sexually transmitted infections, and even lifestyle factors like an imbalanced diet, poor hygiene, or tight/uncomfortable clothing. 

When it comes to diet, fiber goes a long way in doing away with loose stools that could be causing irritation. If you're sure that your diet, what you're drinking, or poor hygiene is not the reason for an itchy butt, you may want to see a specialist to rule out any skin-related conditions or underlying diseases. An itchy rear might sound humorous at first mention, but the health conditions you can't see from the outside that could be causing the irritation are not a laughing matter.