The Ultimate Guide to Soothe Dry Skin

Guide to Soothe Dry Skin

by Cynthia Trickett, PA-C, MPAS, Physician Assistant and recipient of the 2022 Society of Dermatology Physician Assistants Membership Service Award, shares how incorporating both medical and cosmetic treatments can address more severe skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and Melasma.

The Ultimate Guide to Soothe Dry Skin

Rough, dry patches, cracked skin, chapped lips, and irritated skin can be challenging to manage during the winter. We understand it can be irritating to try and cover up dry, flaky skin. For some individuals, these skin issues occur year-round and not just during the winter season. The good news is dry, irritated skin can be treated and alleviated. At North Dallas Dermatology Associates, we offer professional guidance and treatments to fit your skincare journey.

Causes of Dry Skin

  •  Environmental Factors
  •  Harsh Skincare Ingredients
  •  Eczema
  •  Psoriasis

Critically dry skin is often genetic and can worsen during dry and cold seasons. However, everyone can experience dry skin at any time, and at any age. Overexposure to cold temperatures decreases humidity levels resulting in the skin losing essential moisture. Symptoms may worsen with dry weather by causing the skin to crack and bleed. For individuals dealing with skin conditions, the dry and winter seasons can result in flare-ups. Dry, peeling skin is also a sign of skin damage to the epidermis caused by a sunburn.

Many habits within your skincare routine can worsen symptoms of dehydrated skin. Cleansing the skin too frequently can strip the skin of moisture and lead to dry and irritated patches. Using products with harsh ingredients and exfoliating too often may also lead to dry skin. Skin care products, such as toners and retinoids, can dry the skin if they’re overused. It is important to remember skin health is all about balance. Our skin is constantly changing therefore we may need to adjust our skincare regimen from time to time.

Skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and melasma are associated with more severe symptoms of dry skin like itchiness, rash, oozing skin, hyperpigmentation, and hypersensitivity. Eczema is prevalent in the skin with a weak barrier function, as it cannot retain moisture and protect against irritants and environmental factors. Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease where infection-fighting cells attack healthy skin cells. While psoriasis can be genetically passed on, it can affect any individual. Psoriasis causes the appearance of red patches and scaly skin. Similar to eczema, psoriasis can appear on many parts of the body.

Melasma is a skin condition that causes patches and spots on the face, creating discoloration. Melasma is most common in women, especially during pregnancy. And, it is often associated with the appearance of eczema and psoriasis.

Eczema and Psoriasis Triggers:

  • Rough fabric
  • Skin infections
  • Heat & sweat
  • Cleaning products
  • Pollen
  • Fragrance
  • Cold & dry air
  • Other irritating chemicals

It is important to know the triggers of these skin conditions to reduce and manage symptoms. Avoiding these triggers can bring instant and long-term relief to dry, irritated skin.

Treatments for Eczema:

  • Emollients (moisturizers) – moisturizing treatments that soothe and hydrate the skin
  • Topical creams and ointments – generate moisture

Treatments for Psoriasis

  • Topical creams – treat mild to moderate psoriasis
  • Phototherapy – treats stubborn, thick plaque psoriasis
  • Oral and injected medications – treat severe psoriasis

Treatments for Melasma:

  • Hydroquinone cream
  • Chemical peels
  • Microneedling
  • CoolPeel

These are some of the most common treatments. Incorporating both medical and cosmetic treatments can improve the appearance and health of damaged skin.

Tips to reduce the drying effect of skin:

  • Moisturize your skin frequently: with creams, ointments, and lotions. Ideally, stick to unscented moisturizers.
  • Wash and bathe with warm water instead of hot water.
  • Use gentle cleansers. Non-foaming/hydrating facial cleansers are great for dry skin.
  • Avoid harsh skincare ingredients. Alcohol and strong fragrances irritate the skin and reduce essential moisture in the skin. 

These simple skincare tips can help reduce eczema, psoriasis, and Melasma flare-ups. These tips are also effective for dealing with seasonal dryness. Try your best to avoid skin triggers such as fragrances, harsh ingredients, and over washing. Commit to a hydrating skincare regimen to restore soft and healthy skin.

If you are having difficulty managing your symptoms or need some guidance, it is important to seek the attention of a professional. Our North Dallas Dermatology Associates providers can help you with your skincare journey. We offer medical treatments and cosmetic services to help regain your confidence and restore your skin. Call our office and book a consultation today.


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North Dallas Dermatology Associates8144 Walnut Hill Lane Suite 1300
Dallas Texas 75231
Fax: (214) 420-7380

Our Hours:

Mon-Thurs: 8:00AM – 4:00PM
Friday: 8:00AM – 1:00PM
Free parking is available on the ground level of the parking garage directly attached to the BB&T bank.

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