How to Heal Extremely Dry Skin
If your skin becomes dry and cracked, particularly in the winter, don't be alarmed. When your skin is exposed to cold, dry temperatures, it may become depleted of moisture, which causes skin to dry out. Whether your skin is chronically dry, or is only dry during the winter months, you can heal your dry skin at home if your doctor approves. If you have a health condition or any other symptoms in association with your dry skin, consult a doctor to find the best treatment option for your particular case.
Bathe once a day at the most, says the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology website. Bathing too frequently will strip oils from the skin, making it even more irritated and dry. Avoid vigorous rubbing with a washcloth while bathing.
Blot your skin with a towel until it is damp after getting out of the shower. Rubbing dry skin will irritate it and completely remove the water from your skin. Instead, leave some moisture on your skin to hydrate it.
Apply an unscented moisturizer to the skin while it is still damp, says Kenneth Neldner, M.D., chairman of the Department of Dermatology at the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Medicine in "The Doctors Book of Home Remedies." The body will absorb moisture more effectively if your skin is damp.
Slather your skin with a sunblock with at least 15 SPF before going outside, says American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. Sun exposure, even if it's on a cold day, will dry out skin.
Wash your clothing in fragrance-free detergent that is formulated for sensitive skin. Harsh detergents may irritate dry skin, making it red and itchy. Eliminate fabric softeners from your washing and drying cycle to keep your skin irritant-free.
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