Now that winter has finally arrived bringing the snow and colder temperatures it is time to remind ourselves how to protect our skin. Everything from chapped lips to dry toes needs protection during the winter. For chapped lips make sure to use a good lip balm that contains a sunscreen and moisturizer. Drink plenty of water, stay hydrated, and if possible have a humidifier which will help put moisture into the air to keep static and dryness in the house to a minimum. Make sure to keep hands frequently moisturized especially since we wash them, and have them often in dishwater. If you are suffering from dry, cracked heels before going to bed lubricate them with a petroleum jelly or heavy moisturizer and wear clean, white socks to bed. This will help trap in the moisturizer.The soaps and facial cleansers we use in the summertime will not protect our skin in the winter. Like we change our wardrobe, so must we change the soaps and moisturizers we use. In the winter we want to use gentler soaps that don’t strip away the protective oils. Those that contain lanolin or glycerin are better for us at this time. For moisturizers use those that are heavier and creamier in order to coat the skin and stay on longer. Avoid long, hot showers as these can actually take away moisture from the skin. If possible shower in lukewarm water or take a shorter hot shower. Immediately after showering apply a coat of baby oil or other skin oil to help trap in the moisture. Last but not least be aware of protecting your earlobes, nose, cheeks, hands, and feet from long exposure to the cold. Make sure these areas are covered well when out in the cold; wear layers of clothing, heavy socks, and a good pair of gloves to avoid frost-nip or frostbite. If you think you have frostbite seek emergency help; do not try to rewarm the affected areas. For further assistance on staying protected in the winter contact the professionals at WNY Medical., PC by going to their website, www.edinfocom.com/wny_medical for the locations of their offices and to make an appointment.
Written by Diane Woolverton