Dry Skin & Acne Causes, Prevention, Home & Medical Remedies

    Dry skin is often a temporary or seasonal problem, one that you experience only in winter or summer, for example. But the problem may remain a lifelong concern. Patches of itchy, irritated skin announce its arrival. Although your skin is often driest on your arms, lower legs and sides of your abdomen, the locations where these dry patches form can vary considerably from one person to the next.

    Signs and symptoms of the condition will depend on your age, health status, living environment, the amount of time you spend outdoors and the specific cause of your problem. With dry skin, you may have one or more of the following.

     Sensation of skin tightness, especially after showering, bathing or swimming.
Skin that appears shrunken or dehydrated skin that teds and looks rough rather than SMOOTH. Itching that sometimes may be intense slight to, severe flaking, scaling or peeling. SKIN fine lines or cracks in the skin redness

    Dry skin is caused primarily by your amount of exposure to certain environments, particularly when the air is dry and has low humidity. Common causes of dry skin include

    In general, your skin is driest in the winter, when temperatures and humidity levels plummet. Winter conditions also tend to make many existing skin conditions worse. But the reverse may be true if you live in desert regions, where temperatures can soar but humidity levels remain low.

    Inferior-heating and air conditioning. Central heating and cooling systems, as well as wood-burning stoves, space heaters and fireplaces all reduce humidity and dry your skin.
Hot baths and showers, frequent cleaning and rinsing, especially if you like hot water and long soaks, breaks down the lipid barriers in your skin and dries you out. So does frequent swimming, particularly in chlorinated pools.

    Harsh soaps and detergent: many popular soaps and detergents strip and water from your skin. Deodorant and antibacterial soaps are usually the most damaging as are many shampoos which dry out your scalp.

Sun exposure: like any type of heat, the sun dries your skin. Yet damage from ultraviolet (UV) radiation penetrates far below the top layer of skin. The most significant damage occurs deep, where collagen and elasin fibers break down much more quickly than they should, leading to deep wrinkles and loose, sagging skin (solar elastosis). Sun-damaged skin may have the appearance of dry skin.

Home Remedies.
    It's more important to prevent moisture from leaving your skin than it is to try adding moisture back into your skin. Although it may not be possible to achieve flawless shin, the following measures can help keep it moist and healthy.

Moisturize your skin
    Moisturizers form a seal over your skin that helps keep water from evaporating from its surface. Thicker moisturizers work best, such as over-the-counter brands Eucerin and Cetaphil. Also consider using cosmetics that contain moisturizers. If your skin is extremely dry, you may want to apply an oil, such as baby oil, while your skin is still moost . Oil has more staying power on the skin than moisturizers do.

Avoid harsh, drying soaps
    If you have dry skin, it's best to use cleansing creams, gentle skin cleansers and bath or shower gels with added moisturizers. Choose mild soaps that have added oils and fats such as Neutrogena, Basis or Dove. Avoid deodorant and antibacterial detergents, which are especially harsh.

    You might want to experiment with several brands until you find one that works well for you. A good rule of thumb is that your skin should feel soft and smooth after cleansing, never tight or dry.

Limit bath time
    Hot water and long showers or baths remove oils from your skin. Limit your bath or shower time to about 15 minutes or less, and use warm, rather than hot water.

Moisturize after bathing
    After washing or bathing, gently pat or blot your skin dry with a towel so that some moisture remains on the skin. Immediately moisturize your skin with an oil or cream to help trap water in the surface cells.

Use a humidifier
    Hot, dry indoor air can parch sensitive skin and worsen itching and flaking. A portable home humidifier or one attached to your furnace adds moisture to the air inside your home. Choose a humidifier that meets your budget and special needs. Be sure to keep the humidifier clean to ward off bacteria and fungi growth.

Choose natural fabrics
    Natural fibers such as cotton and silk allow your skin to breath. Wool, although it certainly qualifies as natural, can irritate even normal skin. When you wash your cloth, try to use detergents without dyes or perfumes.

Suppress itching
    If dry skin causes itching, apply cool compresses to the area. To reduce inflammation, use a nonprescription hydrocortisone cream or ointment, containing at least one percent hydrocortisone.

Medical Help
Most cases of dry skin respond well to lifestyle changes and home remedies. See your doctor if:

  • Your skin doesn't improve in spite of your best efforts.
  • Dry skin is accompanied by redness.
  • Dryness and itching interfere with sleeping.
  • You have open sores or infections from scratching.
  • You have large areas of scaling or peeling skin.