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Dry Skin (cont.)

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What are possible complications of dry skin?

A common complication of dry skin and itching is secondary bacterial infection. Infections may be mild and resolve spontaneously or may be more severe and necessitate antibiotic treatment. Severe itching leads to repeat scratching of lesions, hence the "itch-scratch-rash-itch" cycle. Because of the persistence of this itch-scratch cycle, the skin may become much thickened in these areas from rubbing. Repeat skin rubbing in the same area may lead to two localized chronic skin conditions called lichen simplex chronicus (LSC) and prurigo nodule.

What are some home remedies for dry skin?

Apply an emollient cream two or three times daily to wet skin.

Dry skin may be improved by taking lukewarm showers or baths and avoiding excess skin scrubbing. Hot water and harsh scrubbing can take away the natural oils that protect skin and make the skin even drier.

Dry skin may be prevented by use of gentle cleansers. Non-scented, mild cleansers or soap-free products like Aveeno, Cetaphil, Dove, or Neutrogena are recommended for dry and sensitive skin. Many scented, deodorant, and antibacterial soaps can be too harsh and wash off natural skin-protecting oils.

Special moisturizers containing lactic acid (Amlactin, Lac-Hydrin), or urea (Urix or Carmol) are also effective in hydrating the skin.

Mild soaps and cleansers include

  • Dove soapless cleanser,
  • Aveeno cleanser,
  • Cetaphil cleanser.

Mild moisturizers without perfumes are good for dry skin. Thick and greasy emollients work best. Typically, moisturizers should be applied within three to five minutes of bathing when the skin is still damp.

The moisture on the skin and in the environment is very important to dry skin. Maintaining the skin at optimal hydration and using an indoor humidifier may help improve dry skin.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/27/2014

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Source: MedicineNet.com
http://www.medicinenet.com/dry_skin/article.htm

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