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It's very easy to get very dry skin and very itchy skin in the winter. The good news is that they're both easily preventable ...
and treatable. Dr. Schultz explains.
Tags:How to Treat Dry and Itchy Winter Skin,DermTV,dry winter skin treatment,how to care for your skin,how to treat dry winter skin,how to treat itchy winter skin,itchy winter skin treatment,skin care
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Dr. Neal Schultz: Hello, I'm Dr. Neal Schultz and welcome to DermTV.
It's wintertime and despite your best efforts to the contrary, your skin is getting dry and it's starting to itch. Let me tell you how to stop that itching.
First, try a non-sedating antihistamine like Allegra, Hismanal or Zyrtec. And the reason I say non-sedating is because we don't want to put you to sleep. Now, antihistamines won't help the itching for everybody, but they're certainly worth a try. Use a cold water humidifier in your bedroom, especially at nighttime when you're sleeping. You spend several hours there, and that's a perfect opportunity to restore the moisture in your skin. Use a cold water humidifier, not a hot water one and make sure the chamber that holds the water is easily detachable.
That way, you can clean it every day and avoid the build-up of undesirable germs. If you don't want to use a humidifier and if you have a free-standing radiator, you can actually put a pot of water on the radiator. When the dry steam heat in the radiator comes on, it causes the water in the pot to evaporate again putting more moisture into the air. Just make sure you clean out that pot every day.
But the most important thing for helping the itching of dry winter skin, of course, is moisturizers. Apply them as soon as you get done patting dry after your bath or shower to help lock in the moisture that you picked-up in your bath or shower. Re-apply them frequently and if your skin is very itchy get a moisturizer with menthol in it because menthol causes a cooling sensation; it supersedes and stops the itching. An example is Sarna lotion, and that's available without a prescription.
Avoid wearing wool, because wool fabrics have little fibers that poke out into the skin and really, really aggravate itching in people who have dry itchy skin. Lastly, if you're itching, don't scratch. Scratching feels good, stops the itching, but unfortunately it begets more itching. If you are itching you can just apply pressure to the area as I am on my arm and that pressure will stop the itching without causing more itching. But the most important thing to remember, if you're itching from dry winter skin is moisturize, moisturize, moisturize.
Please join me again at dermtv.com. If you have a question please send me by visiting dermtv.com/question. I'm Dr. Neal Schultz and thank you for watching today.