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Dry skin is one of the most common causes of itchiness. The loss of oil glands as you age can cause your skin to become drier. Anything that further dries out the skin, such as overuse of soaps or frequent showering in hot water, can make the problem worse. Chronic dry, itchy skin can impact your life in many ways, such as preventing you from sleeping and affecting your state of mind. You experience symptoms like cracks, peeling, scaling, flaking, and redness. How do you put a stop to the irritation and frustration of dry, itchy skin?

Try IV therapy

One of the quickest and most effective ways to deal with dry, itchy skin is with an IV hydration treatment to rehydrate your cells. It provides oxygen and nutrients to the skin and helps to strengthen its barrier function. Staying hydrated is the first line of defense against dry, itchy skin.

Unlike applying moisturizer to the outside of the skin, IV fluid goes directly into the bloodstream and provides hydration from the inside. The vitamins in IV therapy also work to fortify your hair, skin and nails, support collagen production, and hydrate dry skin. For IV therapy in Washington DC, DripHydration, DistrictFuze, Javan Wellness, and other providers offer IV infusions that can help improve a wide range of conditions.

Use a moisturizer with the right ingredients

The skin becomes dry when it cannot retain enough water or natural oils. One of the most common ways to prevent dry skin is to use moisturizers. Creams, ointments, and lotions work by rehydrating the top layers of the skin and locking in moisture. To lock in moisture more efficiently, apply a moisturizer within a few minutes of washing your face or drying after a shower or bath.

Moisturizers usually contain three main types of ingredients:

  • Humectants that attract moisture include ceramides, glycerine, hyaluronic acid, lecithin and sorbitol.
  • Ingredients like petrolatum, lanolin, silicone and mineral oil help to seal moisture in the skin.
  • Emollients, such as linoleic and lauric acids, smooth the skin by filling in gaps between skin cells.

In general, the thicker the moisturizer, the more effective it will be, which is why using creams and ointments is better than using lotion.

Try to avoid using moisturizers that contain the following ingredients, as these can irritate or dry out your skin:

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  • Fragrances
  • Alcohol
  • Preservatives
  • Synthetic dyes
  • Parabens
  • Benzoyl peroxide
  • Salicylic acid

What to avoid if your skin is dry and itchy

Minimize your use of soap: Soap dries out your skin because it strips out key elements from the top protective layer. Using soap regularly can make dry, itchy skin worse because it has a higher pH level than skin and can make the skin’s pH level too high. Steer away from perfumed soaps, deodorant soaps, and alcohol products, which can strip away natural oils. Instead, use a gentle cleanser.

Don’t bathe or shower in hot water or for too long: Soaking in a long, hot bubble bath can also dehydrate dry skin further. The soap suds can disrupt the skin barrier and cause moisture loss. The longer you bathe and the hotter the water, the more evaporation sucks the moisture out of your skin and leaves it dry and wrinkly.

Don’t be too zealous when washing your skin: The surface of your skin contains protective oils, and if you overwash it, it leads to dryness. Use a light touch when using a washcloth. You should also try to pat your skin dry with a towel rather than rubbing it.

Avoid sun damage: Sun-damaged skin is likely to be drier and itchier. For your skin’s sake, stay safe when outdoors by wearing the right protective clothing, sunglasses and sunscreen. Avoid going out in the middle of the day when the rays of the sun are strongest. Use a water-resistant, broad-spectrum sunscreen that shields you from UVA and UVB rays. The SPF should be at least 30 or higher, and you should reapply it as suggested on the label.

Avoid wearing irritating fabrics: Some fabrics, such as wool, can irritate itchy skin. Pay attention to which clothing makes your itching worse and recycle or donate it. Some fabric softeners can irritate the skin, so use a fragrance-free laundry detergent if needed.

Quit smoking: Nicotine causes blood vessels to constrict and reduces blood flow to the skin, which makes the skin drier. It also hastens the aging process and causes wrinkles.

Try not to scratch: If you scratch, you will damage your skin and can even make it bleed. Most of the time, using the right moisturizer will relieve the itchiness.