Health Tips, Skincare

What Causes Dry & Damaged Skin & What Can You Do About it

Having dry and damaged skin is a common concern that affects many people at some point in their lives. It can be frustrating and even lead to other skin issues such as itching and discomfort. Our skin functions as a protective barrier against external elements but various factors can disrupt its moisture balance. When this happens, it can lead to dryness and even damage.

Understanding the causes and effects of dry and damaged skin is essential in adopting effective habits for better skin health, such as proper skincare practices as well as seeking appropriate treatment.

So, let’s explore the factors that cause the skin to become dry and damaged, and what can be done to remedy it:

Natural Aging Process

Aging is inevitable and is a natural phenomenon that we all go through in life, impacting the condition of our skin in various ways. One of the most significant changes that occur is when our skin produces less oil, which plays a vital role in maintaining the skin’s moisture balance. Our skin’s natural oils help retain moisture and form a protective layer that prevents excessive water loss, keeping the skin supple and hydrated. However, when their production decreases, the skin’s ability to retain moisture also decreases, which can lead to dry and impaired skin barrier function.

Environmental Conditions

The environment also plays a significant role in the health and condition of our skin. Exposure to harsh weather conditions is also known to cause the skin to become dry and damaged. This includes cold and dry air, low humidity, wind and excessive sun exposure. These environmental factors can have a detrimental effect and disrupt the skin’s moisture level, causing the skin to become dehydrated and break down collagen and elastin fibers in the skin, which can lead to premature skin aging.

Hot Showers and Baths

If you enjoy long hot showers and baths, then this might not be good news to you as frequent and prolonged exposure to hot water is known to strip the skin of its natural oils that causes the skin to become dry and vulnerable. It can also cause redness and inflammation, particularly to sensitive skin as heat can dilate blood vessels and trigger a response that leaves the skin looking flushed and irritated. Besides that, prolonged exposure to hot water can aggravate existing skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis and rosacea, worsening inflammation, itchiness and discomfort.

Excessive Washing

Excessive washing can have detrimental effects on the skin. When the skin is washed too frequently or with harsh scrubbing techniques, its protective barrier can be disrupted. This disruption can result in dryness and damage to the skin. The natural oils that help maintain moisture and protect the skin are stripped away, leaving it vulnerable to dryness, irritation, and other skin issues. It is important to find a balance and avoid over-washing to preserve the skin’s natural protective barrier and maintain its overall health.

Harsh Cleansing Products

Harsh ingredients such as soaps, cleansers, or skincare products that contain irritants, fragrances, or alcohol are known to disrupt the skin’s natural balance as they strip away the skin’s natural oils and compromise its protective barrier, leaving it more prone to dryness, redness, and discomfort. So, it is advisable to opt for gentle and non-irritating cleansers that are specifically formulated for the skin type, as they help maintain the skin’s natural balance and promote a healthier complexion.

Unhealthy Lifestyle Habits

Poor nutrition, dehydration, excessive alcohol consumption, smoking, and neglecting a proper skincare routine can all contribute to dryness and damage to the skin as well as accelerating skin aging. Adopting a healthy lifestyle, including a balanced diet, hydration, avoiding harmful habits, and establishing a consistent skincare routine, can help promote healthier, more vibrant skin.
It’s important to note that individuals may have different underlying causes for their dry and damaged skin. Consulting a dermatologist or healthcare professional can help determine the specific factors contributing to your skin condition and provide appropriate treatment options.

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