When we feel dry, it’s easy to grab the closest bottle of lotion and slather it on hour after hour trying to bring relief to our dry, itchy skin. However, the best way to truly treat dryness is to identify whether or not it is being caused by an underlying source. While wintertime dry skin caused from dry air is easily treated with the nearest bottle of Lubriderm, showers, allergies and even vitamin deficiency will laugh at your greasy goo and come right back. Figuring out what causes dry skin is your first line of defense in treating it.
We all enjoy the occasional long, hot shower, but if you’re trying to figure out what causes dry skin, you might want to start with your bathing habits. Dry skin after shower time is easy to spot. If you hop out of your bathroom and notice that your skin feels tight, it’s too dry and you need to opt for a shorter and cooler shower instead. You also need to be aware of what you’re using to wash away your daily grime. While many soaps are misleading and claim to moisturize and clean, many of them actually dry skin out or can be allergenic, especially the strongly fragrant ones. Even if your soap isn’t drying, like Dove Sensitive soap, using too much can be one of the causes of dry skin. Over washing strips oils, and oils keep you moisturized. Allergies from fabrics and clothing, as well as from non-hypoallergenic laundry detergents can also make skin feel like an itchy mess, and can dry it out.
Vitamin and mineral deficiency can also give you a clue as to what causes dry skin. Lacking vitamin A, Vitamin B2, D, and E can lead to skin conditions ranging from everyday dry skin to seborrheic dermatitis and eczema. Consider whether or not your diet and supplements contain a vitamin for dry skin repair such as Vitamin A to prevent drying and scaling, both common side effects of a deficiency. Good fats such as Omega-3 are equally important for a healthy glowing skin.
When it comes to treatment, think about what causes dry skin and whether you simply need lotion, or perhaps a diet or routine change. Dry skin affects almost a third of people at any given time, and considering the environmental factors that can come into play, adding anymore will leave you scratching and itching. And remember, skin problems such as dry skin may not only be a reaction to external causes such as toxic and allergenic ingredients in your personal care products, but also an indication of a weakened immune system and potential internal health issues.