It is the time of the year when many people find their skin turning red, itchy, rough, and raw, with flakes shedding from certain parts of the body like the face, hands, and feet.
Dry skin can make people very uncomfortable. It usually occurs where there is insufficient moisture in the skin. Apart from winters, other instances like bathing too much, using harsh soaps, age, or medical conditions can lead to very dry skin.
However, the winter season exacerbates the issue with humidity levels going down both inside the house and outside. Therefore, it is important to retain moisture in the outermost layer of the skin called the epidermis.
Winter dry skin is fortunately easy and cheap to take care of. Following are the things you can do to heal and protect your skin:
During winter, people tend to be less thirsty and drink less water. This can lead to dehydration and while it might seem counter-productive, it is equally important to take water during the cold season.
Water regulates the temperature of the body. With dehydration, the core temperature of the body is affected which is why it is important to keep a water bottle close.
Heavy moisturising during winter is essential. To prevent the skin from losing its moisture and add extra to it, the best way is to use a lotion or cream, preferably designed for the winter season.
"The thicker the cream, the better. To really treat dry skin, the cream should hold its form when you turn the jar upside down. If it’s thin enough to come in a pump bottle, then it’s likely not going to do the trick for winter dry skin, and you should save it for the summer,” Dermatologist Dr Abigail Waldman told Birmingham Health Hub.
It is also necessary to use mild skin products like soaps and shampoos and avoid overusing scrubs and exfoliators.
Diet is more important to the skin than we like to believe. Experts believe that women should take at least 2,000 calories a day and men 2,500 calories during winter.
Foods that have omega-3, vitamin B6 and B12, and keep the immune system strong should especially be taken.
Some over-the-counter medicines recommended by pharmacists can also help with flaky and dry skin. However, if things go out of hand, a dermatologist should be consulted.
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