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Dry Skin and Winter
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Susan Evans, MD posted:
Dear Readers,

Dermatologists all over the country are dealing with complaints of dry and itching skin now that winter is here. The decreased humidity, temperature extremes, and tendency to become dehydrated in the winter all play a role in this.

Dry skin is a frustrating condition and as you know winter weather makes it even worse. If you have a moisturizer that does not burn, then you should stick with that.

Here are a few more dry skin tips for winter:
  • Take warm showers, not hot. When possible, rinse in cooler water. This helps your skin to not over-respond to the hot water by becoming more dry and red.
  • After showering, washing your face or hands, be sure to dry your skin completely with a dry towel. I'm not sure why this is, but we tend to only partially dry our hands during the winter, and this will contribute to the development of really dry skin that is prone to cracking and breaking.
  • Some people use a sugar scrub that is oil-based, which seems to help hold moisture better than their usual lotions.
  • Use a humidifier in your room. Winter air is dry and your skin suffers from this. Raising the humidity in your home will help your overall symptoms.
  • Obviously, you want to stay well hydrated, so drink plenty of water and water containing beverages, eat fruit and vegetables. Stay away from caffeine and alcohol because they dehydrate you.
Hopefully some of these tips will help you to get through the winter without too much discomfort.

Best,

Dr. Evans
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