It is said that "chronic itch is the skin equivalent to pain."
Itching disrupts sleep, limits your activities, diminishes your concentration and generally is quite maddening. We will scratch, claw and tear up our skin to satisfy that annoying itch sensation. It is poorly understood by modern medicine but the burden on patients is very real and taxing to even the most stoic of individuals. A psychological component complicates its definition and study, as just thinking about itchy things can cause you to itch.