To prevent chapped hands:
- Limit excessive hand washing as much as possible (while remaining sanitary).
- Avoid hot water.
- Try to keep the air in your home humid.
- Use moisturizing lotions on your hand regularly - especially if you live in a dry climate.
- Use mild soaps - preferably soap that contains some cream.
- Avoid excessive sun exposure or exposure to extreme cold or wind.
To soothe chapped and sore hands:
- Avoid putting your hands in water unless necessary.
- Apply skin lotion frequently (if this doesn’t work, try creams or even ointments).
- Wear gloves for doing everyday chores (cotton is best).
- Hydrocortisone creams (available over the counter) are recommended for badly chapped hands.
- If your hands don’t improve, contact a dermatologist. For related information also see eczema and contact dermatitis.
by Janet G. Derge, M.D.
All ArmMed Media material is provided for information only and is neither advice nor a substitute for proper medical care. Consult a qualified healthcare professional who understands your particular history for individual concerns.