College of DuPage Nursing Student Keli Campbell shared with Healthy Lombard that during the winter months, our skin loses moisture naturally from the decrease in humidity. Add to that the number of times we wash hands throughout the day. And if you work in health care, are a new mom, a caregiver, or just like extra clean hands, chances are you probably need to follow up that hand washing routine with some lotion. Maybe a lot of lotion to avoid those dry, flaky, sometimes cracked hands.
Dry cracked hands can be visually unappealing, sometimes embarrassing and a nuisance, it can also be dangerous to your overall health!
Cracks in your skin put your body at risk for infection because you’ve lost the first line of defense. against invading bacteria. Cracks in the skin allow for bacteria to enter the body. An example of this is cellulitis. According to Healthcare.gov, cellulitis is a bacterial infection that can enter the body and then blood by an opening in the skin.
Cracked hands may be prevented or relieved using lotions containing colloidal oatmeal ingredients. There is a high concentration of starches, which is responsible for the protective and water-holding functions of oat. The use of colloidal oatmeal as a skin protectant is also regulated by the FDA. There is an abundance of lotions available for purchase, that is why it’s important to review the contents.
Not all lotions contain colloidal oatmeal. A large number of hand lotions contain fragrance for that pleasurable smell most of us enjoy but can also be harmful to our skin. Some fragrances can cause a skin allergy or become a skin irritant. Maybe try skipping the scented lotion or alternate between the protective lotion and your favorite scent. Either way, your hands will thank you!