Solving Winter Dehydration

Have you ever heard of winter dehydration? Your body has. Here’s what’s going on:

Dry Skin: Cold, dry air pulls moisture from your skin. Even the warmer indoor air is substantially drier than in summertime. Additionally, many people take longer, hotter showers, which can rob the skin of its natural oils. Those at the highest risk of dry skin in winter are older adults; with age, the skin loses its ability to lubricate itself.

Oh no! With the increased focus on handwashing and hand sanitizing this season, dermatologists are seeing more dry hands than ever before! To avoid this, use a fragrance-free hand cream or ointment immediately after washing your hands.

Dehydration: In wintertime, people generally drink less water. Here’s why: colder temperatures cause the body to conserve heat by drawing blood to the core, and this can cause a diminished thirst response.

What to do: Dehydration can impair the body’s ability to function properly, and dry skin can lead to itchiness, cracks, and even eczema. But here are some tips to combat winter dehydration:

  • Drink plenty of water.

  • Use a humidifier in your home.

  • Take shorter, lukewarm showers, and use a moisturizing soap.

  • Use a thick, lubricating moisturizer (thicker products that come in a tub, not a tube) immediately after showering or bathing.

  • Cover as much of your skin as possible when going outside.

  • Wear protective gloves when washing dishes.

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