How to Heal Cracked Hands
Dry, cracked skin on your hands can be painful and unsightly. Several factors play a role in the onset of cracked skin, such as daily contact with harsh soaps and hot water, a history of eczema or natural reduction of the skin's natural oils as you age. A proper skin-care routine is important for preventing your hands from cracking, however, treatments to reverse the damage and ease discomfort are readily available.
Wash your hands only when necessary, using lukewarm water and a mild soap. Hot water and harsh soaps dry your hands, worsening cracked skin. According to Vanderbilt Occupational Health Clinic, you should avoid prolonged exposure to water, making frequent handwashing taboo for dry, cracked hands.
Apply bath oil to your hands when coming in contact with water. Bath oils will prevent your skin from drying out by forming a protective barrier, according to "The Doctors Book of Home Remedies." Bath oils are especially useful for necessary hand washings.
Apply moisturizer to your hands frequently throughout the day, suggests Vanderbilt Occupational Health Clinic. Lotions, creams and ointments provide differing levels of moisture with lotions being the mildest. "The Doctors Book of Home Remedies" suggests beginning treatment with lotions and upgrading to creams then ointments until you find a successful moisturization technique for your hands.
Wear a pair of cotton lined rubber or vinyl gloves when doing chores around the house or yard. You can also double up on gloves by wearing a simple pair of cotton gloves underneath your rubber or vinyl unlined gloves, suggests "The Doctors Book of Home Remedies." Cotton is highly absorbent and protects your hands from the drying effects of water, soaps and other harsh chemicals. Change your cotton gloves every 20 minutes when working.
Apply a thin layer of vegetable oil to your hands if you have been soaking them in water. Sometimes, soaking can be therapeutic, according to "The Doctors Book of Home Remedies." Applying vegetable oil immediately after water immersion seals in moisture, preventing further drying and soothing chapped skin.
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