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The hidden suffering of those with dry skin (Xerosis)

The Hidden Suffering of Those With Dry Skin Ogden Pharmacy

Hello, dear readers! It’s your friendly neighbourhood Ogden Pharmacy here, nestled in the vibrant heart of Calgary, Alberta. Today, we’re going to chat about something that affects us all at some point – dry skin. Whether you’re strolling down the bustling streets of Ogden or enjoying the tranquil corners of Lynnwood and Riverbend, we’re here to walk this journey with you.

Dry skin, or as the medical folks call it, xerosis, is a bit of a chameleon. It can pop up anywhere on your body – from your hands to the delicate skin around your nose and eyes. It’s as unpredictable as Calgary’s weather, with Chinooks, heatwaves, rain, hail, and fluctuating humidity levels all in a single day’s forecast.

Dry skin can be an unwelcome guest, causing discomfort in the form of itchiness, redness, and cracking. While it’s not typically a serious condition, it can be a bit of a nuisance to manage, especially when faced with Calgary’s long, frost-kissed winters and the dry warmth of indoor heating systems.

What Causes Dry Skin?

You can all-of-a-sudden get a dry skin without any warning or signs. Variety of factors can cause and trigger that condition. This list, although not exhaustive, can provide you with some ideas about the possible culprits:

  1. Climate: The crisp cold temperatures combined with low humidity levels characteristic of Calgary’s (and Alberta’s) climate can inflict dehydration onto your skin.
  2. Indoor Heating: The indoor heating systems we rely on during Calgary’s long, snowy winters can also contribute to dry skin.
  3. Hormonal Changes: The beautiful journey of pregnancy brings about changes in the female body, which can lead to dry skin.
  4. Medications: Some medications, for instance that are used to treat acne, could cause dryness (you always have to check with your doctor, pharmacist, and healthcare providers regularly to avoid that).
  5. Cosmetics: Certain cosmetics, particularly those containing alcohol, can lead to dry skin.

Symptoms of Dry Skin

Dry skin can show up in various ways. The most common symptom is itchiness, which can range from a gentle whisper to a loud call for attention. The skin may also feel taut, dry, and rough, like a desert waiting for rain. In more severe cases, the skin may crack and bleed, and in very severe cases, the skin may become infected.

very dry and red-spotted hands due to dryness.

How to Manage Xerosis (Dry Skin)

If you’re grappling with xerosis, or dry skin, you must first determine and sidestep the factors causing skin dehydration. If the arid and frosty climate in Calgary (or any dry weather condition) is the culprit, you might want to consider deploying a humidifier in your domicile or workspace. If pharmaceutics are at the root of the issue, engage your healthcare provider in discussions about transitioning to an alternative medication. If cosmetics are causing harm, it might be beneficial to switch to skin-friendly products.

Pinpointing and mitigating the source of skin dehydration is pivotal as a first step, following which you can address the symptoms. Emollients or medicated creams make a great starting point in your regimen to hydrate the skin. Apply these immediately post-shower or bath while the skin is still moist to trap the moisture. Avoid regular soaps or opt for soaps fortified with moisturizing agents to counter further skin dryness.

The skin enveloping the nose and eyes is especially vulnerable to dryness due to its thinner texture and fewer sebaceous glands relative to other facial zones. Here are some straightforward steps to tackle xerosis in these areas:

  1. Employ a mild, non-abrasive cleanser.
  2. Avoid hot water usage, as it can exacerbate skin dryness.
  3. Post-cleansing, apply a hydrating agent to the affected region. Opt for moisturizers with hyaluronic acid or glycerin, known to attract and hold moisture.
  4. Apply the moisturizer generously and let it penetrate for several minutes prior to applying cosmetics or sunblock.

You can source a variety of cleansers and moisturizers at Ogden Pharmacy, your local skincare solution destination.

If your skin persists in feeling akin to arid landscapes, you might need to consider a more intensive regimen. A brief course of topical corticosteroids can help assuage inflammation and boost the skin’s barrier function. For severe xerosis, your healthcare provider might recommend a prescription cream or ointment with urea or lactic acid. These components act like gentle precipitations, breaking down the connections between dead skin cells, thereby enhancing the skin’s capacity to retain moisture. In exceptional cases, systemic medication might be essential.

Preventing Xerosis

Preventing xerosis is equally crucial as treating it. One of the most effective steps you can take is to ensure skin hydration. Hydrate internally by consuming ample water and avoiding diuretic beverages.

Steer clear of extended hot showers or baths, known to deplete the skin’s natural oils. Moreover, using a gentle soap and avoiding vigorous skin scrubbing is advisable.

Xerosis can be a challenging and discomforting condition. However, multiple treatments are available to alleviate the symptoms. With apt care, individuals with xerosis can achieve relief and comfort.

At Ogden Pharmacy, we empathize with the trials of living with xerosis. We’re dedicated to aiding you in managing this condition. As xerosis is classified as a minor ailment, our Calgary branch at Ogden, proximate to the Riverbend communities, is equipped to assist with preliminary diagnosis and treatment. We may also direct you to a general physician for further assistance with your skin condition.

In conclusion, xerosis is a prevalent condition that can be effectively managed with the right care and treatment. Whether you’re in Calgary, Alberta, Ogden, Lynnwood, or Riverbend, remember that you’re not alone in this journey. With the right knowledge and resources, you can navigate the challenges of dry skin and find comfort in your own skin. So, let’s embark on this journey together, hand in hand, towards healthier, happier skin.

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