How to Cure Cracked Hands
Day in and day out, your hands take a beating. Sun exposure in the winter and decreased humidity in the fall and winter months take a toll on them, and everything you touch affects the skin. To make matters worse, hand-washing, though an essential health practice, can leave your skin in desperate need of care.
Wash hands using a hand soap that specifically states it is moisturizing. Pat hands dry rather than rubbing them, since rubbing hands with a towel depletes moisture and is rough on the skin. Apply moisturizing hand cream after you wash. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends that you towel dry just enough to remove water droplets, applying moisturizer over still-damp skin to lock in the moisture.
Use a moisturizing hand sanitizer instead of washing with soap and water if your hands appear to be clean. Dr. Michael Roizen and Dr. Mehmet Oz recommend using hand sanitizers for reducing dryness related to hand-washing as well as their germ-fighting abilities.
Protect hands while performing chores--both at work and at home--by wearing disposable work gloves. The gloves will protect your hands from hot water and harsh chemicals, which can worsen the condition of dry cracked hands.
At bedtime, apply a liberal amount of moisturizing hand cream or petroleum jelly to hands. Gently pull on a pair of cotton gloves to protect hands overnight. Remove gloves the next morning and massage in any excess hand cream or remove excess petroleum jelly.
If air in the home is unusually dry, consider adding a humidifier to moisturize the air. This gives the added benefit of moisturizing all of your skin.
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