How to Stop Cracked Dry Hands
Your hands suffer greatly due to winter weather, contact with chemicals or even too much time in water. The result of these abuses is dry skin with splits that are painful and can open the door to infection. The older you are the more quickly this type of condition can develop. Fortunately, there are ways to both prevent and cure dry, cracked hands. Gentle care and attention will restore the skin to its natural soft and crack-free state.
Use a mild soap when you wash your hands and avoid over-washing your hands. Pat your hands dry on a soft cloth rather than vigorously drying them with paper towels. Avoid hand dryers when possible as these can rob your hands of necessary moisture.
Wear driving gloves when you travel during the winter. Keep your hands gloved anytime you are exposed to winter elements to help prevent chapping.
Wear rubber gloves when using cleaning agents. Many household chemicals dry and chap your hands due to their harsh and abrasive nature.
Wash your raw vegetables all at one time to avoid frequent contact with these foods. Many of these foods, including onions, garlic, tomatoes and lemons, contain acidic juices that can harm your skin. Protect your hands with plastic gloves if possible.
Put emollient cream on your hands several times a day to help provide a barrier against drying elements.
Apply antibiotic cream to any splits on your hands as recommended by Audrey Kunin, M.D.in her article for Dermadoctor on "Hand and Finger Care." Do as little labor as possible with your hands until the cracks have healed and keep them out of water.
Coat your hands with a layer of petroleum jelly and cover with cotton gloves or a pair of socks. Leave on for a couple of hours or overnight for maximum benefit.
See a dermatologist if your chapping is severe or you suspect you may have contact dermatitis. In an article for the Skin Care Tips from Dermatologist website, Dr.Hanish Babu, MD says a physician may need to prescribe antibiotics or suggest other treatments before the condition worsens.
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