How to avoid dry hands from frequent washing

A constant washing is the main recommendation that they make us to avoid the contagion and spread of viruses and diseases. However, excess can have consequences and it is good to know how to avoid dry hands.

But the problems may not end there, as dry skin cracks and breaks, opening wounds that are the gateway to infection. So we are faced with a dilemma.

In this article we will learn about the various causes why hands can become dry, we will explain the risks of frequent washing and we will provide some recommendations to prevent the skin from losing its natural hydration and softness.

Causes of dry hands

Dry hands can manifest as a sensation of roughness, irritation and redness, itching and peeling, especially on the palms and fingers. One of the reasons why it is presented is soap.

According to research, in health professionals who have to wash hygiene products many times cause irritations. On the other hand, among the side effects of antibacterial gel, whose use has increased, dryness can be mentioned, particularly those with high alcohol content.

Cold is also often associated with dryness. In a clinical study, low temperatures were found to increase the risk of skin conditions.

Another important factor when it comes to dry hands is a lack of hydration. However, this should not be confused with washing, as its practice does not necessarily hydrate more.

Also, some skin conditions promote dryness and cracking. This is what happens with dermatitis.

Gels with high alcohol content are not indicated to avoid dry hands. To check this, attention should be paid to product labeling.

Do not stop reading: Hand and foot care: exfoliation and hydration.

Risks of too much hand washing

Washing hands too much is something that is often associated with repetitive ritual behaviors of people with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). On the other hand, in certain circumstances, frequent washing becomes an imperative to prevent disease. However, extreme hygiene has its risks and can be counterproductive.

Several studies have determined the damaging effects on the skin caused by frequent hand washing. Damage to the outer membrane and stratum corneum is observed, with significant changes in the amount of water (dehydration) and scaling.

Researchers have found a high prevalence of skin damage due to dry hands in health personnel, especially nurses. These disorders were correlated with variables such as the number of washes and the type of soap used.

Other consequences of excess when washing hands are the following:

  • Increases the risk of developing skin rashes.
  • Eliminates natural oils, losing protection against infections.
  • When the skin dries we are more susceptible to the proliferation of pathogens in the cracks or wounds.
  • There is impoverishment of the normal cutaneous bacterial flora.
  • Being dry, skin loses shine and elasticity.
  • They increase the chances of suffering from dermatitis.

You may also be interested in: How to make an aloe vera and lavender hand sanitizer

How to avoid dry hands from frequent washing?

While stopping washing is not an option, yes it is possible to take some precautions to avoid dry hands. Let's see.

1. Necessary washes

The first precaution is the most obvious: we should wash only when necessary. In other words, we have to avoid excesses in terms of the frequency and duration of the process.

Now, if we consider that we wash our hands the minimum of times and for the right time, but still notice some irritation, then we can move on to the following points.

2. Warm water

Especially in the coldest months of the year, It is advisable to use warm water to avoid dryness when washing our hands. Be cautious, however, as the skin on the back is sensitive.

3. Mild soap

We must look for a soap that not only keeps our hands clean, but also takes care of the skin. This refers to both bathing and washing, as well as laundry and dish detergent. Preferably, gloves should be worn for washing and scrubbing.

One option is artisan soaps, based on aloe vera, oatmeal, coconut or olive oil. Some of these don't even contain caustic soda, but they do moisturize and help keep your hands soft.

3. Dry your hands

As paradoxical as it may seem, leaving hands wet after washing is not beneficial to prevent dryness, but quite the opposite. Wet hands also favor the proliferation of germs.

Therefore, you must wash and rinse your hands well to remove all traces of soap and then use a clean towel that is completely dry.

4. Antibacterial gel

It is possible to replace some washes with antibacterial gel. Today, many people take this option if they are on the street and cannot use water.

Nevertheless, For those who already have dry hands, this can be harmful, Unless it is an antibacterial gel made with natural ingredients.

If you are going to buy a commercial one, it is important to select the one that has a low amount of alcohol. Experts recommend that the concentration of this substance be less than 60% to avoid dry hands.

5. Moisturizing creams

Both to treat dry hands when it has already occurred, and to avoid it, it is advisable to use moisturizing creams that contain oils without alcohol. Ideally, they do not have colorants or perfumes either.

With moisturizing creams, you also have to avoid excesses, in terms of the amount applied to the hands and the number of times. Ideally, a pea-sized dot after it has been thoroughly washed and dried.

Using moisturizer is a good alternative to combat dry skin. They come presentations formulated for the hands.

6. Hydration

When it comes to hydrating, It is important to remember that this can be done in two ways: from the outside, with moisturizing creams, and from the inside, drinking enough liquid.

Avoid dry hands by washing the right time

We use our hands for many things. When we are in the street we touch handrails, doorknobs, money, doors. They must be washed in their entirety, from the back to the nails, before eating, before and after going to the bathroom, when you get home, when handling food, after performing any manual task.

On the other hand, unless we are medical personnel about to operate, the process of wetting our hands, lathering, rubbing, rinsing and drying should not exceed 1 minute and 20 seconds is the minimum.

Any excess in the number of times and in the duration can lead to undesirable consequences, such as dryness.

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