Dry, Itchy, Dull-Looking Skin
Dry skin is a very common problem that almost everyone experiences at some point during their life. It is characterised by parched, dull looking, flaky skin, that is prone to dry patches or itching, and affects men and women equally. The elderly are more likely to experience dryness as the skin has reduced levels of natural oils, and those in ill-health or on medication may also experience skin dryness.
Dry Skin Causes & Triggers
Body changes such as pregnancy or menopause, changes in climate, and reactions to irritants may all cause dry skin.
Certain jobs or hobbies can trigger dry skin, particularly those which require regular hand-washing such as nursing or catering, or activities that involve regular exposure to chemicals, such as hair-dressing.
Extreme dryness can cause the skin to crack, which can then become infected causing inflammation and itching. This is particularly common on areas of the body that may have reduced blood circulation such as the heels of the feet.
Dry Skin Treatments
Here are some helpful hints for treating dry skin:
- Apply a moisturiser regularly, especially after showering or bathing.
- Consider a humidifier during the winter months to stop the air in your home becoming too dry when you turn the heating up. You can do this by placing a saucer of water near your radiators.
- Turn the temperature of your shower down a couple of notches, as very hot water can strip your skin of its natural oils.
- Use natural skincare products when possible to reduce skin toxicity, and limit contact with harsh chemicals in cleaning products by wearing gloves or switching to natural alternatives.
- Hydrate from the inside by drinking water throughout the day.
- Ensure you are getting the right nutrients by eating a balanced diet. Investigate eating foods that contain omega oils and a wide range of vitamins and minerals to nourish the skin.