Do you suffer from dry and chapped hands, especially in winter? Here are the possible causes, besides the cold, and the most effective remedies to hydrate them
In addition to the face, the hands are the part of the body that is most exposed to atmospheric agents and this causes a series of damage, especially during the winter season. In this regard, it is essential to learn how to protect them, both by using a pair of gloves and with a deep and daily hydration. In particular, the continuous exposure of the hands to the cold and icy wind, together with the heating that tends to make the air very dry, make them very rough and chapped.
Poor hydration also contributes to very dry hands. The problem of dry hands concerns men and women, without distinction, and in specific periods of the year. In addition to atmospheric and environmental factors, the hydrolipidic film also determines the resistance to cold: the protective barrier that covers the epidermis and guarantees constant hydration. If it is very fragile, the classic symptoms of delicate and sensitive skin may appear: discomfort, persistent itching, eczema, micro-cuts and even chilblains.
- Dry hands: all causes
- Dry hands: what are the signs?
- Dry hands: some precautions to follow
- Dry hands: what remedies to follow
- Chapped hands: when should I see a doctor?
Dry hands: all causes
There are several causes of dry hands and certainly the arrival of the winter season does not help. First of all, it is good to know that dry skin is considered a real condition of damage to the outer protective layer of the skin. This is a circumstance that can occur occasionally, but also continuously in the most predisposed people. The dryness of the skin, and especially of the hands, is due to a series of agents capable of reducing the presence of lipids in the skin, first of all: the most affected areas are the legs, lips and hands, of course. The outermost layer, therefore, becomes particularly dry and very difficult to treat, if not with specific and suitable products.
Its elasticity and protective capacity and ability to retain water are reduced: necessary conditions to hydrate the skin properly. One of the most damaging factors is certainly the cold, accompanied by the typical wind of the winter season: in fact, it causes the blood vessels to contract, causing the skin to slow down its natural cell regeneration process. The low atmospheric humidity, then, contributes to increasing the transpiration of the skin and a consequent and enormous loss of water. Here is the second cause of dry and rough hands. Washing your hands is certainly an important gesture, a real good habit: before sitting at the table or after going to the bathroom. In short, there is nothing wrong and this is true.
However, we must be careful: washing hands in a spasmodic way could cause irritation that should not be underestimated, especially if you use very aggressive soaps. Inevitably, aging is also one of the causes of dry hands, and unfortunately it is a condition that is impossible to monitor. It is part of nature, and although some precautions are followed, aging is part of a process that cannot be stopped in any way. Older people, however, are the most exposed and their skin tends to produce less and less fat.
Dry hands: what are the signs?
Cracked and dry skin, especially in the hands, causes severe itching and, if not treated properly, could also lead to the creation of micro-cuts, cracks and flaking. In fact, taking care of the skin of your hands is not only important to avoid pain or irritation, but also to present yourself to others as best you can. Every day you come into contact with different people and it is important to take care of your appearance down to the smallest detail.
Furthermore, dry and chapped hands lose a lot of water and consequently dehydrate very quickly: in this way, severe irritation is caused, another symptom attributable to rough and unhealthy skin. Irritating agents for the skin of the hands are also smog and pollution and this is almost taken for granted. Few, however, consider UV rays as one of the triggers of dry and damaged skin. In fact, even in summer it is very important to protect yourself from sunscreens, taking advantage of the powerful action of creams. The saltiness, then, causes a strong dryness.
Dry hands: some precautions to follow
Dry and chapped hands first of all need constant and deep hydration: this is the first precaution to take into account in order not to incur the classic symptoms mentioned here. Provide your skin with the right amount of water, always. Furthermore, to combat dry hands, it is very important to moisturize the skin daily: apply a good water-repellent product several times a day that may be perfectly able to protect the skin from external aggressions.
At the same time, it is good that the product you have chosen to use also knows how to retain water within the epidermis. A third and important precaution is precisely to prevent the formation of dry skin with the help of a good cream, perhaps homemade. Remember to apply the cream in the morning, before leaving the house and in the evening, before going to bed. However, you can choose to use it whenever you feel the need. Hydration is a very important step, if not the first step to avoid various irritations.
Dry hands: what remedies to follow
There is a solution to everything and therefore there is also a remedy for dry and chapped hands. Surely, at the base of a treatment for dry skin there is complete and daily hydration. Every day we come into contact with many different surfaces: public transport, banknotes, common places, handles, handrails. All this, together with the cold and a certain sensitivity of the skin, leads the skin to become very dry and to split easily. The skin of the hands, in particular, needs a lot of attention and specific care, as it tends to get damaged and dehydrated in a very short time.
There are many products that can be purchased for hand care: more precisely, we are talking about moisturizing creams, able to heal the skin from the depths and promote cell renewal. Generally, for dry, chapped and cut hands, a cream with a restorative and emollient action is recommended: this type of cream can be purchased both in pharmacies and in personal care shops. There are many brands and it is good to get advice based on the specific problem you encounter. In fact, each person does it for himself. A good emollient cream contains substances such as lanolin, squalene, isopropyl palmitate, jojoba oil. These are ideal ingredients to combat dryness and irritation: in fact, they help the skin to remain young, soft, but above all hydrated.
Remember, hydration is the key word! Other substances present in this type of product, on the other hand, are humectants and this means that they are concerned with keeping the skin elastic, retaining moisture on the surface: sorbitol, hyaluronic acid, glycerin. If the skin on your hands tends to crack and bleed, it will be necessary to take advantage of the intensive action of a specific product to solve the disorder: for example, you could use petroleum jelly. Apply a delicate layer of the product on the skin before going to bed and wear a pair of cotton gloves for greater effectiveness. The following day, your skin will be smooth and velvety. Seeing is believing!
Chapped hands: when should you see a doctor?
Of course, a good moisturizing and emollient cream is the ideal ally to fight dry and cracked skin. It is essential to know how to choose a good product, with concrete efficacy and perhaps get advice from a specialist. The use of a pair of gloves to do housework is also very important to protect your hands and prevent them from coming into contact with aggressive agents present in detergents. If you are a housewife, even more so, a good pair of gloves could become your new best friend!
In some cases, however, the prevention methods adopted may not be sufficient in relation to the seriousness of the problem: this is therefore the time to consult a doctor. In particular, if the skin in addition to being cracked also starts to hurt, it is good to notify your dermatologist and schedule a check-up as soon as possible. Cracks and cuts in the skin of the hands indicate a very serious situation, to be kept well monitored. Be very careful, as severely dry and cracked skin could cause major infections. The latter, if not treated in time, can easily lead to sepsis: a fatal blood infection.
And again, if you notice that the skin of your hands has white ulcers, abnormal bleeding, swelling, redness accompanied by fever, it is advisable to consult a doctor. These are extreme conditions, but they can occur without warning. No situation should be underestimated, even if apparently trivial. Particular attention, then, must be paid by people who suffer from diabetes: cracked and dry skin, for people with this disease, heals with a slightly longer timeframe and, even more so, it is good that a series of preventions: hydration and protection, always and in any case.