SUNDAY, Jan. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Throughout the winter, excessive hand washing to prevent the spread of germs can leave skin extremely dry and itchy. Drinking coffee and alcoholic beverages can also lead to dehydration and dry skin, experts say, but proper skin care and hydration can prevent skin from chapping or cracking.
"As the temperature is low and the heater is on, the indoor air gets dehydrated and your skin loses moisture from the environment," said Dr. Michelle Tarbox, a dermatologist and assistant professor of dermatology at Saint Louis University, in a medical center news release. "Water always moves downhill, even on a microscopic level, and when the level of moisture in the air drops due to the heating process, it practically sucks the water out of your skin."
Tarbox offered the following tips to help keep skin hydrated during the winter months:
The American Academy of Dermatology provides more tips on how to relieve dry skin.
-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas
SOURCE: Saint Louis University Medical Center, news release, Dec. 20, 2012
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