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Caring for Dry, Cracked Hands

Washing hand in the basin. The Seaweed Bath Co.

For many of us, when the temperature turns cold, our hands become dry and cracked. For psoriasis and eczema suffers this can be a daily, year-round struggle. When your hands become cracked and irritated, there are several steps you can take to ease discomfort and prevent further dryness.

1. Avoid washing your hands too often.This may sound gross and unacceptable, especially during flu season, but limiting your hand washing can make a big difference. Always wash your hands when necessary, but try to avoid excessive hand-washing.

2. When washing your hands, avoid harsh soaps. Always use gentle, all-natural cleansers that do not contain any dyes, parabens or sulfates, which can remove natural oils from the skin and dry out your hands.

3. When washing dishes or doing household cleaning, always wear protective gloves. We like these gloves made by TrueBlue. They are latex free and machine washable.

4. Always moisturize after washing your hands. After cleaning your hands with mild soap and water, softly blot them dry with a towel. Then apply an oil-based moisturizer or hand butter to lock in moisture. For added protection and softness, consider putting on cotton gloves while lounging around the house or sleeping to help hold the moisture in. You can buy inexpensive, machine-washable gloves, like these, at any drugstore.

5. Protect any cuts in the skin to avoid further irritation and infection. If you have open cuts on your hands, consider applying an over the counter ointment, such as Neosporin, to help heal the cuts faster and reduce the risk of infection.

How do you protect your hands when the weather turns cold and dry?

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