Are you Suffering from a Dry Itch & Dry Skin? |
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Are you Suffering from a Dry Itch & Dry Skin?

Are you Suffering from a Dry Itch & Dry Skin?

Dr. Nandini Baruah - Skin Care Doctor
by: Dr. Nandini Baruah

Consultant – Dermatology and Cosmetology

Dry skin also known as Xerosis, is caused due to lack of appropriate amount of water in the most superficial layer of the skin, the epidermis. A common condition, it gets aggravated in winters, however many suffer from the same in summers too. Dry skin is most common in the lower legs, arms, sides of the abdomen and the thighs.

Due to the loss of moisture, the skin may crack and peel, or become irritated and inflamed. Dry skin may be mild or temporary or severe and lifelong. Though the condition is generally not serious, it can be uncomfortable, affecting the quality of life. In some cases, dry skin could be a symptom of a serious underlying condition.

Dry skin tends of affect males and females equally. Dry skin worsens with age. Nearly 75% of the people over 60 have dry skin.

Suffering from a Dry Itch in pregnancy

Causes of Dry Skin:

  • Cold , windy conditions
  • Dry Heat
  • Low humidity
  • Room heating and air conditioning
  • Hot baths and showers
  • Harsh soaps and detergents
  • Abrasive itchy clothing
  • Sun Exposure and using swimming pools with high levels of chlorine
  • Medications
  • Old age
  • Hormonal changes
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Diabetes
  • Menopause
  • Malnutrition
  • Psoriasis or Atopic Dermatitis
  • Vitamin A deficiency
  • Folliculitis – inflammation of the hair follicles
  • Keratosis pilaris – small acne like bumps causing rough patches

Consult a Doctor if:

  • You feel itchy without a visible rash
  • Dryness and itching are preventing you from sleeping
  • Dry skin is accompanied with redness
  • You have open sores or infections from scratching
  • You have large areas of scaling or peeling skin’
  • The onset of dry skin is sudden
  • You develop dry skin while suffering from conditions like poor blood circulation or diabetes

Moisturizers and emollients work best when they are applied to skin that is wet or damp.

Home Care Remedies:

  • Keep the skin moist
  • Avoid strong soaps and detergents
  • Use gentle cleansers
  • Avoid sudden changes in body temperatures
  • Take short cooler baths
  • Use a humidifier
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Apply cool compress to itchy areas
  • Use natural fabrics like cotton or silk
  • Do not scrub or dry the skin too hard or for too long
  • Shave right after bathing , when the hair is soft
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