What is dry skin? Dry skin occurs when the oil producing glands of our skin does not secrete enough sebum oil which protects our skin from the environmental factors and hence the skin becomes sore, dry and flaky. Dry skin in a person can be caused due to inherited tendencies, can be caused due to hormonal changes like during pregnancy or can be caused due to nutritional deficiencies. Extreme temperatures can also cause dry skin. Dry skin is also caused due to health conditions such as psoriasis, eczema or dehydration.
Preventing dry skin: Dry skin is a highly prevalent problem during winter season. To protect against this condition, keep the heaters down during day-time and instead wear extra clothing. Electronic appliances such as heaters, air conditioners, computers and TV increases the positive ions concentration in the air which dries the skin by removing moisture from the atmosphere. Keep the place humidified and avoid using electric blankets while sleeping.
Exercising is vital to improve circulation and a proper healthy diet is equally vital. To avoid dry skin one should also switch from using a soap to using a cream or cleansing lotion. One also needs to avoid alcohol based toners and astringents as these remove the oil content from the skin.
Under-eye gels or lotions need to be used regularly as there are very few sebaceous glands under our eyes. Before starting house work its advisable to apply a moisturizing cream and wear gloves while touching or working with detergents and other cleaning items.
Treating dry skin: A healthy balanced diet with fruits and vegetables is very important for treating dry skin. Foods rich in essential fatty acids, fish oil, zinc and vitamin E and vitamin D and A is very important in your diet. Primrose oil has essential fatty acids in it which can be consumed once daily and aloe vera gel too acts wonders for treating your dry skin.
Chickweed is also a natural cure which when used as a compress, relieves itching caused due to dryness. Almond and olive oil are also very effective for dry skin. Honey too is a natural cure for dry skin eventhough it might be a sticky option. Oatmeal can also be used for treating dry skin. Fill a muslin bag with 2 cups of coarse oatmeal and soak in a lukewarm bath for about 15 minutes. Pat dry and immediately apply moisturizer to keep the moisture intact.