As the winter months approach, many people begin to struggle with dry, itchy skin. Decreased humidity in the air outside and forced heat in the home lead to an environment that favors dryness in our skin and hair.
This is made even worse for patients with atopic dermatitis, or eczema, especially children. Many people with these skin disorders experience seasonal flares.
There are some things anyone can do to do help keep their skin comfortable throughout the winter months. Keep baths or showers brief and lukewarm (not too hot and not too long). After toweling off, apply a ceramide containing moisturizer to the skin. These help to keep the skin barrier healthy, which keeps your skin feeling comfortable, instead of tight and itchy.
For severe dry skin, you may consider adding an ointment-based product over top, to seal in the moisturizer and prevent water loss through the surface of your skin. If you have a humidifier on your furnace, increase the humidity level in your home to at least 30 percent. Consider adding a humidifier in the room you spend the most time in as well, such as your bedroom.
Staying well hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids is also helpful in keeping your skin moisture content healthy. If you still struggle with dry skin, or there are cracks in your skin, it’s time to see your dermatologist.
Meredith Price MD FAAD heads Hamzavi Dermatology Grosse Pointe.
Online at HamzaviDerm.com; on Instagram @gpdermdoc; on Facebook @HamzaviDermGrossePointe.
Credit: Grosse Pointe Magazine