Defeating dry skin in winter weather

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Winter weather can bring a beautiful snow fall, but it can also bring things that aren’t so pretty – like red, cracked, dry skin.

For some, that dryness can even evolve into an unexpected condition.

“When I moved here it’s been drying up behind my neck,” Tiffany Craig said.

She spent most of her life on the west coast and said she anticipated dry skin when she moved, but she was caught off guard when the doctor told her she acquired adult eczema.

“It gets worse during the winter obviously,” Craig said,” If it’s windier, if it’s drier, then I can feel it flaring up.”

Family care physician assistant, Ginger Strand, said it’s not only the outside air, but the dryness from cranking up the heat inside, too.

Tiffany said prescription creams were expensive and didn’t last long, so she opted to use different kinds of lotions, but found that coconut oil works especially well.

“I put a lot of it on at night, especially,” she said. “So that helps not clog your pores too, so I would highly recommend that.”

Another remedy is actually to bathe less.

And when you do take a shower or bath, Strand said there are a few things to remember.

“Only wash the essential parts. The under arms, the groin area, and your feet. Water on the rest and the oils will help hydrate the other parts of your body. Moisturize after the bath because that’s when your pores are more open and that’s when your skin will suck up and use the lotion better.”

She also said to use warm instead of hot water, as the heat will dry out your skin even more.

Strand advises to exfoliate every so often and drink lots of water.

While some cases of dry skin and eczema are worse than others, “It’s very itchy and it’s very uncomfortable and just think of an alligator skin on your back, that’s what it feels like,” Craig said.

These tips can help keep your skin smooth, despite sub-zero temperatures.

Although it is advised to bathe less, we are in the middle of a widespread flu season.

So washing your hands is still crucial, but keeping a bottle of lotion next to the soap can go a long way.

Strand also advised humidifying your home, so you can battle the dry air from inside, too.

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