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Dry skin is a common skin condition marked by a lack of the appropriate amount of water in the epidermis, which is the superficial layer of the skin. 

The condition is common to both males and females, with older people being much more prone to having dry skin. Older people have skin with diminished amounts of natural skin oils and lubricants. Also, the arms, hands, and particularly lower legs tend to be more affected by this condition. 


Environmental factors, such as humidity and temperature also have an effect on the water retained within the epidermis. For instance, cold, dry air when heated by a furnace will cause dry skin by evaporating moisture on the skin. Frequent hand-washing and sanitizing can also result in evaporation and dryness. Dry skin may also occur as a side effect of some medications as well be a byproduct of certain skin diseases. Dry skin if left untreated may result in complications, including, eczematous dermatitis, secondary bacterial infections, cellulitis, and skin discoloration. But then again, dry skin is usually mild and can be treated easily.


The treatment can begin as soon as the first signs and symptoms are noticed such as itching, rough dry skin and red plaques of eczematous skin. The itchiness can in fact start the "itch-scratch" cycle, when the sufferer feels itchy, scratches in response, which in turn exacerbates the itch, and so on. The itch-scratch cycle happens more during sleep when conscious control of scratching is low or absent. The skin may become thick and leathery with constant scratching and rubbing. Small, red, raised bumps may also appear that can be irritated, opened or infected if scratched. 


Both external and internal factors are responsible for dry skin. While external factors such as over-washing with harsh soaps, overuse of sanitizers and lipid solvents, cold temperature, and low humidity may sometimes all cause dry skin, internal factors such as overall health, age, genetics, family history, and a personal history of other medical conditions like atopic dermatitis, hypothyroidism, diabetes and malnutrition can also play their part. Medications for high blood pressure and cholesterol as well as retinoids for acne treatment such as Retin A and isotretinoin may also dry out the skin.


Usually, a diagnosis for dry skin will be made visually and by a review of past medical conditions and family history. Occasionally, a biopsy may be required. The best treatment for dry skin should aim to stop the itching, prevent loss of water, and restore skin hydration. Providing daily lubrication with an emollient is a good regimen to have. Depending on your skin type and condition, the doctor will recommend the right type of moisturizer. 


Home remedies for dry skin are taking lukewarm showers or baths and avoiding excess skin scrubbing. Both hot water and harsh scrubbing can deprive the skin of its natural oils that are so essential in protecting skin and making it even drier. Using mild and gentle cleansers is recommended as scented, deodorant and antibacterial soaps can aggravate the problem. Mild moisturizers without perfumes also work for dry skin. Thick and greasy emollients can be most effective. The moisturizer should be applied within three to five minutes of bathing when the skin is still damp.


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Moreover, since maintaining proper humidity in the environment helps in keeping skin at optimal hydration, using an indoor humidifier may help improve dry skin. The Low Noise UVC Car Mini Air Purifier helps your skin stay hydrated even as it purifies the air. This quiet humidifier is easy to carry and provides you relief from dry skin by providing water vapor for long hours at a stretch.

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