CIGNA members: Please note that you may receive a letter in the mail stating that The Dermatology Center of Indiana is no longer in your network. This communication from CIGNA is incorrect and we would like to reassure you that we are still in network with CIGNA. We look forward to continuing to service you and your family for all your dermatology needs.

Winter is Here – Seasonal Dry Skin Treatments

Combating dry, itching skin during the winter is a hard battle to fight.  But by making good skincare choices during the winter season, you can be on the road to healthy, hydrated skin!  The key to healthy skin is hydration! And you need to obtain it from more than one source!

Fight your dry, itching skin from the inside out by drinking lots of water throughout the day!  Before you go for that cup of tea or coffee, drink a glass of water first.  You might find that you require more water intake than normal in the winter time, due to the dry, heated air around you.  Added heat to the air decreases the humidity; thus, our skin loses moisture as it comes into contact with the air around it. 

Try a humidifier: You can combat the dry air by adding water via the use of a humidifier.  Humidifiers are often utilized when people are sick, but there is an added benefit to your skin by utilizing a humidifier throughout the cold, winter season. It helps keep your skin and the air moist, which will decrease your risk of developing dry, itching skin. If you don’t have humidifier, you may try a metal bowl of water on your heating vents (only to be used away from electrical outlets and with floor registers – not floor heaters). As the heat passes through the register, it will heat the water in the bowl and cause it to evaporate – thus added moisture to the air!

Avoid hot showers: What we apply to our skin can either pull moisture out or help to keep it in.  This might seem ironic, but water can be a detriment – instead of a benefit.  Long, hot showers feel wonderful after you have spent an extended period of time outside in the winter; however, that doesn’t help to hydrate your skin.  The heat from the water can irritate your skin and cause you to develop dryness. Keeping baths and showers short, coupled with a cooler water temperature will help keep your skin hydrated.

Use a moisturizer: Applying a thick moisturizer after your shower will help hydrate and seal your skin.  By using a moisturizer, you also are providing a skin barrier from the elements of winter (cold, wind, etc.).  Look for a moisturizer that has been developed for those with dry skin.

If you have tried the tips above and are still suffering from dry, itching skin, call our office to schedule an appointment with a dermatologist. There are common skin conditions that can mimic the appearance of just dry skin, and we can help you determine the cause of your discomfort and your best treatment.

Disclaimer: This blog provides general information and discussion about medical, cosmetic, mohs, and surgical dermatology. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately-licensed dermatologist or other health care worker.