Dry Skin Care
Special skin care should be followed if you have dry skin that gets worse or causes a skin disease. Dry skin is often itchy skin. Listed below are some ways to help manage your dry skin.
- A bath is much better than a shower for dry skin.
- Use warm water only. Avoid hot water.
- Do not add bubble bath or other products to your bath unless directed by your doctor.
- An evening bath is better than a morning bath. Bathing at night allows you to apply ointments more generously without ruining clothing.
- Use a mild fragrance free soap such as Dove®. Do not use Ivory® brand soap.
- If an antibacterial soap is needed, use a mild one like Cetaphil® Antibacterial.
- Use mild soap only toward the end of the bath. It should be used only on skin folds and other necessary areas.
- Avoid scrubbing or scraping of your skin. Do not use a wash cloth, brush or loofa. If used they will irritate your skin further.
- Avoid soaking in soapy water. Rinse off any soap well. Leaving soap on skin can add to dryness.
- After your bath pat your skin dry with a soft towel. Do not rub.
Creams and ointments
- Apply prescribed skin creams and ointments while your skin is slightly damp after patting dry.
- Next, moisturize the entire dry skin areas and areas that tend to form rashes. Use products such as Vanicream®, Aquaphor®, CereVe®, Cetaphil® or petroleum jelly (Vaseline®) Apply to skin areas that are dry and prone to rashes.
Note: Petroleum jelly is non-allergenic.
- Wear loose-fitting cotton clothes such as pajamas, socks, and gloves after moisturizing and overnight.
If you have questions or concerns please call your health care provider.
The information provided should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
Last Updated: 11/13/2012
Copyright © 11/13/2012 University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. All rights reserved. Produced by the Department of Nursing. HF#6785
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