Winter itch is a common name for the skin symptom of generalized itching in the winter. It is primarily caused by dry skin and is most common in the elderly. Winter itch caused by dry skin may also be seen commonly in those with a history of eczema, allergies, or asthma. External factors, including cold temperatures, low humidity, and the use of central heat, tend to worsen dry skin during the winter season. Therefore, some people refer the condition of dry skin in the winter as “winter itch.”
Winter Skincare Tips
MOISTURIZE MORE AND MORE CONTINUED
Find a product that creates a protective layer on your skin to retain more moisture. Apply a moisturizer within two or three minutes of bathing and reapply periodically. You can keep a bottle of your moisturizer with you all the time.
Be aware of winter sun, because combined with snow glare it can still damage your skin. As a matter of fact, snow is an even better reflector than water, bouncing 80% of the sun’s rays back to us, compared to less than 20% for sand and surf. “Sun exposure is cumulative over a lifetime, so whether there’s less ultraviolet radiation hitting our
skin in the winter, it’s still there.”
PROTECT YOUR HANDS
Wear gloves when you go outside; if you need to wear wool to keep your hands warm, slip on a thin cotton glove first, to avoid any irritation the wool might cause. Avoid wet gloves and socks. Moisturize your hands, cuticles and nails more frequently, five or six applications a day would provide round-the-clock protection. To reach that goal, along with keeping a big jar or tube of your favorite over-the-counter moisturizer in your bathroom, stow smaller sizes in your purse, gym bag and on your desk so application becomes a habit.
BAN SUPERHOT BATHS
The intense heat of a hot shower or bath actually breaks down the lipid barriers in the skin, which can lead to a loss of moisture. Long, hot showers may feel divine, but they can be damning for troubled, itchy skin, drying it out even further.
USE A GENTLE CLEANSER
Scented, deodorant, and anti-bacterial soaps can be harsh, stripping skin of essential oils.
MOISTURIZE YOUR FEET
Use exfoliants to get the dead skin off at least twice a month; that helps any moisturizers you use to sink in faster and deeper. During the winter days, your skin needs extra moisture and so whenever you get the chance throughout the day; rub a good quality moisturizer into your heels and the soles of your feet.
PROTECT YOURSELF FROM THE WIND
Cover your face with hats or scarfs, and use balm for your lips
VISIT A DERMATOLOGIST
You may need a prescription lotion to combat the dry skin, or you may have a condition that isn’t simply dry skin and that requires different treatment.
Read More about Winter Dry Skin
- 10 Winter Skin Care Tips from WebMD
- Dry Skin: Soothing the Itch in Winter from WebMD
- Fighting the Winter Itch: Skin Care Tips by Daily Health Wire
- How to stop winter from weathering your skin: Top ten tips for preventing ‘winter itch’ by Science Daily
- Does dry skin cause winter itch? by MedicineNet
- Prevent and Soothe Chapped Winter Hands
- How to Defeat Winter Itch
- Cracked Heels– A Common Winter Skin Problem