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Dry skin


It is a common problem among most of the people. We might have experienced it at some point in our life. For some, it is a long lasting issue, whereas for others it is temporary. It cannot be considered as a serious issue. But, it can be uncomfortable and give itchy sensation sometimes. Dry skin always causes small fine flakes and dry patches. It is most common during winter and drier climates. People of all ages may get dry skin. But, the elderly are more prone to get it than the younger ones. Individuals with a history of eczema, atopic dermatitis, allergies or asthma are at more risk to get dry skin.


Causes of dry skin are classified into two-internal and external causes. External causes include:

  • cold temperatures and low humidity.
  • Over-washing with harsh soaps
  • Overuse of sanitizers and cleaning agents etc.
Internal factors are:
  • Overall health of the individual
  • Age
  • Genetics
  • Family history
  • Asthma
  • Allergies
  • Side effect of any medicine
  • Atopic dermatitis and
  • Thyroid disease etc.

Signs & symptoms

Itching is the main symptom of dry skin. Other symptoms may include:

  • Rough and dry skin
  • Red and itchy patches etc.

When the condition becomes severe, the itchy sensation also get worse. It may lead to develop itch scratch cycle.


The diagnosis is very simple. Simple physical examination will be enough. The doctor will also review the medical history of the patient. In severe cases, a skin biopsy will be suggested by the doctor. It will help him/her to confirm the diagnosis and treatment plans.


Dry skin can be successfully cured with proper treatments. Frequent, daily lubrication with an emollient will be one of the best treatments for dry skin. You can also try using over- the-counter moisturizers and creams. There are no other treatments than this for dry skin. The doctor may prescribe medications for itching. Anti-itch oral medications may include:

  • Loratidine
  • Cetirizine
  • Hydroxyzine and
  • Diphehydramineetc
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