Winter may be a time for cozy fireplaces and hot chocolate but as a season it can play havoc on your skin and hair. Cold weather can take a toll on our skin. As tempreture drop, our skin loses it’s natural moisture and becomes dry, cracked, flaky. Places where summers are comparatively longer, people wait for winter season. But with a sudden drop in the tempreture, our skin suffers the most.
Last week I had experienced winter rash for the first time. It just showed up out of nowhere. Luckily, it didn’t stay with me for a long time but It was so uneasy for me as the rash was scratchy. I went online and checked what can be done to prevent the rash. I was literally feeling as if some monkey genes have gotten inside me. When I read the measures, there was nothing that I wasn’t doing. So finally, I called my pharmacy to know if I can do anything more. They prescribed me allergy medicine and luckily in one dose, I started feeling better.
Let’s see what is a winter rash, what causes the winter rash and what can be done to avoid it to some extent.
What is Winter rash?: Lower temperatures mean lower humidity in the air and dry indoor heat sucks it up even further. This causes the water normally stored in the top layers of skin to evaporate. When the skin becomes overly dry, it can become irritated and develop into a winter rash. Areas affected can be large or small, with dry patches on the skin here and there. Natural oils like coconut oil and olive oil protect the skin from harsh winter. Petroleum jelly, milk or milk cream, topical treatments and drinking a lot of water also helps.
What causes dry skin:
- over-washing with harsh soaps
- overuse of sanitizers and cleaning agents (alcohol)
- cold temperature
- low humidity
- medicine reaction
What can be done:
- Use humidifier: It will be a good idea to invest in a god quality humidifier before the winter start.
- Keep room heater tempreture moderate
- Shower less: Take short lukewarm bath
- Use mild, unscented soap
- After showering, quickly and gently pat the skin partially dry with a towel and immediately apply moisturizer.
- Reapply cream as needed: Moisturizers help lock moisture in to your skin and can effectively help treat winter rashes right at the beginning.
- Natural oils: Coconut oil, almond oil can soothe the irritated skin.
- Topical cream treatment: Cortizon creams help in reducing the itching and inflammation give some relief
- Do not scratch: This is an absolute No No. If you cannot control it, wearing gloves can be a better option.
- Keep stress levels manageable: Stress affects your skin’s ability to retain water.
- Stay hydrated: Our skin loses water from the outside so it’s important to drink enough water.
If nothing helps and the situation persist for more time then consult your primary physician. Some skin problems need dermatologist prescribe stronger treatments to soothe dry skin, they can also help you tailor a skin care regimen that suits your individual needs.