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Saturday, December 24, 2016



It's that time of the year where your skin begins to peel, lips get chapped, the soles of the feet develop cracks. Though the temperature drops and most people in this city welcome winter, it also brings DRYNESS and low humidity. For people who are already suffering from dry skin disorder this is the worst season in the calendar. A lot of patients come to me with this problem but medicine alone cannot fight the dryness.
We all have a natural oil coating over our skin produced by the oil glands present in the skin. If this oil is removed by any cause it makes the skin dry which leads to cracking and this can lead to inflammation. Winter is not the only reason for chapping, chafing, or cracking of the skin. Here are a few other causes:-
Use of harsh soaps can cause dryness
Long hot showers tend to remove the natural oil in our skin
As you get older your skin starts losing its natural oil and the production reduces
Detergent is especially harsh on the palms producing cracks
Lack of vitamins in your diet
Poor consumption of fluids and water
Most of these causes can be overcome by proper care. As the say prevention is always better than cure , so here are a few ways by which you can prevent chapping, cracking and chafing of the skin.

Contrary to what people believe water actually removes the oils from the skin and the worst kind of water is - soapy water. While washing dishes you are not only removing the oil from the dish but also from your hands. Try to wear white cotton gloves while doing dry work and rubber ones over the cotton ones while washing dishes.
Use a long handled brush while washing
Put vaseline or oil on your hands at night
Another effective way to take care of your hands is by massaging then with a few drops of glycerine combined with a few drops of lemon oil.

The skin on our lips is very thin and unfortunately there are no oil glands to help protect them. Therefore the lips need to be cared for by you.
Avoid licking your lips. This is ofcourse easier said than done. Also refrain from biting of dead bits of skin.
Chewing on your lips is another bad habit. A lot people subconsciously bite their lips all the time. Here is a funny fact for you - women who wear lipstick and are habitual lip chewers eat four to nine pounds of lipstick during their lifetime.
Drink plenty of water to moisturize your lips from inside.
Make sure you are eating healthy, getting your daily dose of vitamins form your food. If not then you should take vitamin supplements specially B2 and Brewers Yeast.
Certain toothpastes can also cause dryness of the lips so make sure yours is not.
Use a lip balm or chap-stick all day long , make sure you are using a good one which will give you proper protection. Simple Petroleum jelly will also help.

There are numerous causes of dry skin. But here are few tips that everyone can follow that will help tremendously no matter what the cause.
Superficial creams are not the solution. Eat healthy, by that I mean try and eat the correct food which will give you all your daily requirement of vitamins which your system needs. Vegetables and fruits are a great source of vitamins but overcooked vegetables loose their vitamins. Brewers Yeast is an excellent nutritional supplement to your diet as it contains vitamins essential for your skin. Also Vitamin E supplement will help and is advised.
Wear cotton clothes, harsh fabrics like wool and synthetics will only aggravate the chafing.
Drink lots of water and fluids through out the day.
For your bath use lukewarm water and not hot water. Use as little soap as possible, the best ones are those which have glycerine or vegetable oil like for example Pears or Oil of Olay.
Just after your bath, when your skin is still damp, apply petroleum jelly or your moisturizer. This helps to trap the moisture in your skin.
Do not take more than one bath or shower a day. This will dry your skin and cause more chafing.
Do not rub your self dry with a towel, just lightly dab yourself dry.

Just remember that whatever you place on your skin is absorbed into your body. So be extremely careful about what you use as a cream or moisturizer. There are a hundred items in the market, choose judiciously and with your doctors advise.
If after all this care and prevention you still have a tendency to get dry, chafed, chapped skin and cracks on your palms and soles then you need treatment.
Homoeopathy has some wonderful remedies for chapping, chafing and cracking of the skin though the constitutional remedy is the best. Here are a few useful drugs for this skin condition.
This is an excellent remedy for skin and its affections. Cracks, thickening, hardness of the skin especially in the folds of the elbow, lips, near the corner of the eyes, fingertips, palms etc calls for this drug.
A mother who while breast feeding her baby develops cracks of the nipples and she says that a dirty, sticky, honey like discharge oozes from the cracks. This condition is very painful and she can't bear to feed her baby. Then this condition calls for Graphites.
The skin has a characteristic raw and unhealthy look about it.
Graphites  will help soothe the skin.

Though the name "Nitric Acid" may make you think of the deadly corrosive acid, it is one of the most important remedy for cracks of the skin.
The lips are dry, cracked and BLEEDING. It resembles the corrosive action that the raw acid produces.
Even the area near the anus is cracked, fissured and bleeding, the patient is in agony after passing stool. Along with the blood there may pus which makes the discharge extremely foul smelling.
Nitric Acid  will help heal the cracks and stop the bleeding.

This is a wonderful remedy for dry skin especially in the winter months.
Chapped hands and fingers, rough tips of fingers calls for Petroleum. The patient says that he feels much better in summer and has no dryness but come winter all his skin problems surface.
The skin of a Petroleum patient feels dry, parched, constricted, as if the skin is dehydrated. There is redness, "itching", and bleeding from the cracks. Here thick, greenish crusts are formed. Even wearing clothes becomes a problem and is painful for the person suffering.
Petroleum  will bring great relief.

Article taken from Dr Shirin Wadia healthcare tips 

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