‘Winter Itch’ is a common condition affecting people of all ages, though as we get older it can become more frequent and challenging.
What is ‘winter itch’? A person’s skin is like a thin sponge, and as such is subject to ‘drying out’ in the winter months, resulting in itchy, dry skin. Increased use of drying heat in the house, and decreased humidity, are a large part of the problem.
So what can be done to prevent and treat ‘winter itch’?
- 1…Avoid hot showers
- Of course a hot shower is exactly what might feel nice in the colder months of winter, but hotter water strips your skin of vital oils that are importance to it’s health.
- Avoid it, except on those parts of the body where it is essential. Soap strips oils from your skin. Consider unscented Dove Soap, as it is higher in moisturizers, and avoid antibacterial, scented and harsher soaps. Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser is an excellent facial cleanser.
- When exiting the shower or bath, do not dry your skin completely and do apply a quality moisturizer, such as Cerave Cream or Lubriderm, within 3 minutes. In this way, you can ‘lock in’ moisture. For extreme dryness, consider using a body cream that contains ‘urea’ or ‘lactic acid’.
- Consider using a humidifier in the winter months. It’s surprising how much this can help.
If despite your best efforts to prevent and treat dry skin, please schedule an appointment in our dermatology clinic.