Dry Skin

Dry skin is a common problem that can lead to dry patches, small fine flakes and cracking of the skin. This condition occurs due to the lack of a sufficient amount of water in the epidermis. Hands, arms, and especially lower legs are those areas which are generally affected by dry skin. The most common symptom of dry skin is itching due to which people are not able to resist themselves from scratching their skin. Skin breakdown and scratches can lead to secondary infections. This problem is more common in drier climates and winter months. Male and female both are equally prone to this problem. Elder people are more likely to get dry skin than the people of young age. It can also occur as a side effect of some medicines but this case is rare. Hypothyroidism and a history of eczema increase the risk of developing dry skin. Some of the complications that are associated with dry skin are eczema, bacterial infections, and rashes. Lubricating creams and lotions and topical corticosteroids are some of the medications recommended to ease itching. There are various home remedies available that prevent and control the condition of dry skin including decreasing the frequency of ing and applying moisturizers on the skin after showers.

Dry Skin Symptoms

Generally, people experience the problem of dry skin in some areas including hands, arms, lower legs, abdomen, hands, ankles, and soles. Check out some of the possible symptoms or signs of dry skin:

-  The most common symptom of dry skin is itching.

-  People notice that they have rough dry skin.

-  There can be the presence of red patches on the skin.

-  If the dryness is severe then people may notice fissures and cracks on the skin.

-  Sometimes, itchiness can lead to itch-scratch" cycle. In this, every time itching gets worse when a person scratches the skin due to itching.

-  The skin can become leathery and thick when a person rubs and scratches the skin constantly.

Dry Skin Causes

There are many causes of dry skin. The causes of dry skin include external and internal factors. The condition of dry skin generally occurs due to external factors including low humidity and cold temperatures. Family history, age, medical history, overall health, and genetics are some of the internal factors. People with some thyroid diseases are more likely to develop dry skin.

Check out various external factors:

-  Dry skin can develop due to cold temperature.

-  Low humidity can lead to dry skin.

-  Washing frequently with harsh soaps can cause dry skin.

-  Extreme use of lipid solvents such as alcohol and sanitizers can lead to dry skin.

Dry skin can also occur due to various internal factors such as medical history, age, overall health, and more. As you age you become more prone to the developed dry skin. Psoriasis, diabetes, malnutrition, hypothyroidism, and eczema are some of the medical conditions that are associated with the condition of dry skin.

How Dry Skin is diagnosed?

It is quite easy to diagnose the problem of dry skin. Your doctor can easily diagnose your problem by conducting a physical examination of your skin. This condition can develop due to external factors such as cold temperature, low humidity, and more as well as internal factors such as age, family history, medical history, and more. That is why your doctor will ask you about your family history, medical history in order to confirm your diagnosis. Sometimes, if the case of the patient is difficult then the doctor may ask to get a skin biopsy done in order to be sure about the diagnosis and recommend the treatment plan.

Prevention

In order to prevent skin from drying, using a humidifier in your home environment is a good idea particularly during winter months and drier months. Sometimes avoiding harsh soaps and reducing the exposure to detergents can help to prevent dry skin. Check out various ways that will help you to get prevention from the condition of dry skin:

-  You should not use those detergents and soaps which are strong.

-  You should not take hot water shower or bathe.

-  You should apply a moisturizer on your skin after taking a shower or e.

-  You should use a humidifier in your room.

-  You should limit your exposure to irritants including solvents.

-  You should use a moisturizing soap when you take a shower or bathe.

-  You should reduce the frequency of showering and shampooing.

-  You should take a  or shower either with lukewarm water or slightly cool water.

-  You should avoid taking certain medications that can lead to dry skin.

-  You should drink plenty of water in order to moisturize your skin from the inside.

-  You should have a healthy and balanced diet including legumes, fruits, nuts, vegetables, and fish.

-  You should avoid or reduce the consumption of alcohol.

-  You should not smoke.

-  You should protect your skin from the rays of the sun by using a sunscreen when you go outside in the sun hours.

Treatment of Dry Skin

The treatment plan that will be recommended by your doctor will depend on the exact cause of your dry skin. Your doctor may recommend you to visit a dermatologist (skin specialist) if required. Your doctor may prescribe you to use some prescription or over-the-counter lotions, creams, or ointments to eliminate the symptoms of dry skin. You may also be recommended some home remedies to treat your condition.

It is important that you use the right type of moisturizer depending on the type of your skin. A petrolatum-based product should be used if your skin is quite dry. In order to help your skin to trap water, you should use those lotions which have antioxidants and grapeseed oil. If your skin becomes less dry during the summer season then you can switch to a water-based or lighter lotion.

Check out some of the home remedies that can be used to treat dry skin:

-  You should drink a lot of water.

-  You should use a humidifier in your room.

-  You should not scrub your dry skin patches.

-  You should not use hot water for showering or ing.

-  You should keep your shower or e time to less than ten minutes.

-  You should apply a moisturizer just after taking a shower.

-  You should use a moisturizing soap when you take a shower.

-  You should pat, instead of rub, your wet skin with a soft towel for drying the skin.

Complications

It is important that you get the best treatment at the earliest without any delay. It can lead to various complications if left untreated or not treated properly. Secondary bacterial infection is the complication of dry skin and itching. The common symptom of dry skin is itching that is why people scratch their skin due to itching. Scratches can lead to secondary bacterial infection. Some people may experience the problem of severe itching. Severe itching can lead to an itch-scratch-rash-itch cycle. Due to itch-scratch-rash-itch cycle, the skin may become thickened from rubbing. If the patient continues to rub the same area then it can lead to some chronic skin conditions including prurigo nodule and lichen simplex chronicus (LSC).

Myths Related to Dry Skin:

Myth #1: People who have dry skin should drink a plenty of water.

Fact: The condition of dry skin generally occurs due to external factors including environment, weather, and the use of various products. You can nourish and hydrate your skin by using the right skin care products. Drinking a plenty of water would not help to replenish the moisture levels of the skin.

Myth #2: Hot showers are good for dry skin.

Fact: Many people feel good after taking hot showers but less they know about the damage it can cause to their skin. When you take a hot shower, the blood vessels dilate which can make your skin even drier. You should take a bath or shower either with lukewarm water or slightly cool water.

Myth #3: Dry skin is an issue of winter months.

Fact: The problem of dry skin generally occurs during the winter season when the humidity is quite low. But this problem can occur at any time during the year. So it is wrong to say that it is an issue of winter months. In the summer season, exposure to the sun, air conditioning, chlorine, and salt water can lead to the tight and scaly skin. The warmer weather can make your skin dehydrate from the inside out so it is important that you have a lot of fluids when you are in a hot country or on a holiday.

Myth #4: Dry skin just requires more oil.

Fact: The problem of the dry skin occurs due to the lack of natural oils. This problem cannot be treated alone with the help of facial oils as it also requires moisture. In order to maintain the balance of nourishment and hydration, it is recommended that a person with dry skin should use a moisturizer in the morning and an oil at night. You can talk to your doctor as which product is best for your skin type.

Conclusion

Dry skin is a common problem that occurs due to the lack of a sufficient amount of water in the epidermis. Hands, arms, lower legs, abdomen, hands, ankles, and soles are some of the areas that are generally affected in the condition of dry skin. The most common symptom of dry skin is itching. Most of the people tend to scratch their skin because of itching. Sometimes, scratching can make your condition even worse. This condition can occur due to internal factors or external factors. Internal factors include age, genetics, medical history, and overall health condition. External factors include low humidity, cold temperature, and the use of various products.

It is quite easy to diagnose this condition by just having a look at the appearance of the skin. In order to reduce the chances of developing dry skin, you should take a shower or e with lukewarm water or slightly cold water. You should choose the skin care products wisely after considering the type of your skin. You can talk to your doctor about which moisturizer is best for your skin type. You should drink a lot of water. You should use a humidifier in your room. You should keep your shower or e time to less than ten minutes.

It is important that a person affected with dry skin should take the best treatment at the earliest. It can lead to a serious complication if left untreated. Secondary bacterial infection is the major complication of dry skin that can occur due to scratching. Prurigo nodule and lichen simplex chronicus (LSC) are the skin problems that can occur if a person rubs the skin persistently in case of severe itching. People have many misconceptions or myths about dry skin. People who have dry skin should drink a plenty of water is one of the major myths. Dry skin is an issue of winter months is a common myth.

If you are looking for the answers to various questions including:

-  What is dry skin?

-  What are the signs or symptoms of dry skin?

-  What are the causes of dry skin?

-  How is dry skin diagnosed?

-  How is dry skin prevented?

-  How is dry skin treated?

-  What are the various complications associated with dry skin?

Then you are in the right place. Please refer to the above-mentioned information in order to get answers to all your questions.

Last updated on : 14-09-2018

Disclaimer : Docprime doesn’t endorse or take any guarantee of the accuracy or completeness of information provided under this article and these are the views strictly of the writer. Docprime shall not be held responsible for any aspect of healthcare services administered with the information provided on this article.

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