“Xeroderma” literally meaning dry skin, is a condition involving the integumentary system , which in most cases is treated with emollients or moisturizers, but on some occasions better to be seen by a dermatologist. Xeroderma mostly happens on the scalp, lower legs, arms, knuckles, the sides of the abdomen and thighs.
What Are The Symptoms Of Dry Skin
- Feeling of skin tightness, especially when bathing in hot water
- Flaking, scaling or peeling of the outer layer of the skin
- Itching, can be very extreme itching
- Cracked skin that can lead to bleeding
What Causes Dry Skin
There can be many underlying factors why dry skin occurs, but common reasons can range from
As we age, our oil glands become less active leading to a smaller lipid barrier. Skin cells begin to clump together appearing flakier. For women, estrogen production declines leading to thinner skin and less fat deposits.
Contact with hot water on a regular bases can cause dry skin. Cold and humid weather Air conditioning/heating
Does Dry Skin Need More Moisture
Drinking more water to help dry skin is a myth that I have heard for a long time. You can drink 10 glasses of water everyday and while it is good for you it’s not going to help with your dry skin. Dry skin appears when there has been damage to the intracellular matrix. Here is a general list in what causes damage to the intracellular matrix.
How Treat Dry Skin Sunscreen
It is very important especially if you have dry skin. It will prevent premature aging, and will help protect the skin’s intracellular matrix. Remember to wear sunscreen even when it is cloudy because sun rays still penetrate through windows, and reflects snow.
Hot baths will definitely make dry skin a lot more worse. When taking a bath or shower use warm water instead of hot water. Add a little bit of olive oil to your bath and that will lock in moisture. Adding oatmeal to your bath can help minimize itching that is related to dry skin as well.
Moisturizing frequently especially after baths will lock in moisture, but avoid lotions or creams that are scented as they can aggravate dry skin more.
When To Go To The Doctor
If dry skin has become inflamed it’s best to see your Doctor for advice. If dry skin is very inflamed and red and has become painful it can be dermatitis which is treated with a steroid cream.