Dry skin occurs when the skin does not retain sufficient moisture. This can happen as a result of frequent bathing especially with the use of harsh soaps, aging, or certain medical conditions. For others it comes from the harshness of colder climates and dry winter air. Symptoms may include one or some of these; red, rough, raw, and itchy skin.
This can be embarrassing. Fortunately, there are many simple and inexpensive things you can do to save yourself the discomfort.
These tips for keeping your skin soft and healthy can help all who battle dry skin, from the chilly zones to the hot dry zones.
Bath with care:
Limit yourself to one five to ten minute bath or shower daily. If you bathe more than that, you might strip away much of the skin’s oily layer and cause it to loose moisture. Use lukewarm instead of hot water, which can wash away natural oils.
Use mild soap:
Minimize your use of soaps, if necessary, choose the ones that moisturises. You might as well consider soap-free cleansers. Stay off deodorant soaps, perfumed soaps, and alcohol products, as these can strip away natural oils.
To avoid damaging the skin further, stay away from bath sponges, scrub brushes, and washcloths. If you don’t want to give them up altogether, be sure to scrub gently. After bathing, pat or blot the skin when toweling dry. Please do not rub.
Apply moisturizer immediately after bathing or washing your hands as it helps plug the spaces between your skin cells and seal in moisture while your skin is still damp.
If you’re using petroleum jelly, rub a small amount into your hands and then rub it over the affected areas until neither your hands nor the affected areas feel greasy. This is to reduce the greasy feel of petroleum jelly and thick creams.
Never, ever scratch:
Please resist the temptation to scratch when you itch. Most of the time, a moisturizer can control the itch. You can also use a cold pack to relieve those troublesome itchy spots.
It has been observed that some skin are sensitive to fragrance. If your skin belongs to this category, use fragrance-free laundry detergents and avoid fabric softeners (since they sit on your skin for the duration you have the cloth on).
Mind your fabric:
Avoid wearing wool and other fabrics that can irritate the skin. You will need to observe how your skin reacts to different fabrics so you know what to wear or not.
Watch out! Your skin might just be reacting to something it doesn’t like. It could be food, change in weather or anything else. Be observant. Dry skin is usually not a serious health problem, but can produce serious complications, such as chronic eczema or bleeding from fissures that have become deep enough to cause serious discomfort.
Ibiene would always recommend that you consult your clinician if the measures you take at home provide no relief. We would like to get your feedback. If you have used these tips and it has worked over time for you, please do share your story with us in the comment section.