5 Ways to Use Petroleum Jelly for Skin Care
The skin is the body’s largest organ, so it’s important to take good care of it. However, doing so doesn’t necessarily mean breaking the bank. In fact, a common, inexpensive product found in most people’s medicine cabinets, petroleum jelly, can have multiple skin care uses for the entire family.To save on skin care, dermatologists recommend using petroleum jelly to:
- Relieve dry skin, including your lips and eyelids: Dry skin can flake, itch, crack and even bleed. Since ointments are more effective and less irritating than lotions, consider applying petroleum jelly to dry skin, including your lips and eyelids. The skin on your eyelids is the thinnest skin on the body and can get irritated easily. If your eyelids get dry and flaky, apply a small amount of petroleum jelly for moisture and protection. For the best results, always apply petroleum jelly when your skin is damp.
- Help injured skin heal: For minor wounds such as cuts, scrapes and scratches, use petroleum jelly to keep the wound moist. This helps prevent the wound from drying out and forming a scab, as scabs take longer to heal. This will also help prevent a scar from getting too large, deep or itchy. As long as the wound is cleaned daily, it is not necessary to use anti-bacterial ointments.
- Prevent chafing: Chafing is a painful skin irritation that occurs when body parts rub together or rub against clothing. To prevent chafing that can lead to blisters, apply petroleum jelly to problem areas, such as the feet or thighs.
- Treat diaper rash: The best way to prevent diaper rash is to keep your baby’s skin as dry and clean as possible. However, if your baby does get a rash, apply petroleum jelly during each diaper change. With the right care, your baby’s rash should clear in about three to four days. If the rash doesn’t go away, see a board-certified dermatologist.
- Rehydrate nails: If you frequently get manicures and pedicures, apply petroleum jelly to your nails and cuticles in between polishes. This will minimize brittleness and help prevent your nails from chipping. For the best results, apply it when your nails are damp.
While petroleum jelly has many benefits, it shouldn’t be used for everything. Avoid putting petroleum jelly on your face if you are acne-prone, as this may cause breakouts in some people. If you have questions about your skin or how to take care of it, give us a call at 304-733-3333.
Frostbite: Prevention and treatment
When the temperature dips below freezing, it’s critical to protect your skin from cold-weather health risks. Frostbite occurs when the skin – and sometimes the tissue beneath the skin – freezes due to prolonged exposure to cold temperatures. Depending on how long and how frozen the tissue, frostbite can result in severe, sometimes permanent, damage.
To stay warm and prevent frostbite, follow these tips from dermatologists:
- Dress in loose, light, comfortable layers:Wearing loose, light layers helps trap warm air. The first layer should be made of a synthetic material, which wicks moisture away from your body. The next layer should be insulating. Wool and fleece are good insulators and hold in more body heat than cotton. The top layer should be windproof and waterproof. A down parka and ski pants can help keep you dry and warm during outdoor activities.
- Protect your feet and toes: To protect your feet and toes, wear two pairs of socks. The first pair, next to your skin, should be made of moisture-wicking fabric. Place a pair of wool or wool-blend socks on top of those. Your boots should also provide adequate insulation. They should be waterproof and cover your ankles. Make sure that nothing feels tight, as tight clothing increases the risk of frostbite.
- Protect your head: To protect your ears and head, wear a heavy wool or fleece hat. If you are outside on a bitterly cold day, cover your face with a scarf or face mask. This warms the air you breathe and helps prevent frostbite on your nose and face.
- Protect your hands: Wear insulated mittens or gloves to help protect your hands from the cold.
- Make sure snow cannot get inside of your boots or clothing: Wet clothing increases the risk of developing frostbite. Before heading outdoors, make sure that snow cannot easily get inside of your boots or clothing. While outdoors, if you start to sweat, cut back on your activity or unzip your jacket a bit.
- Keep yourself hydrated: Becoming dehydrated also increases the risk of developing frostbite. Even if you are not thirsty, drink at least one glass of water before you head outside, and always drink water or a sports drink before an outdoor workout. In addition, avoid alcohol, as it increases your risk for frostbite.
- Recognize the symptoms: In order to detect frostbite early, when it’s most treatable, it’s important to recognize the symptoms. The first signs of frostbite include redness and a stinging, burning, throbbing or prickling sensation followed by numbness. If this occurs, head indoors immediately.
If you experience symptoms of frostbite, try to gradually bring feeling back into the body. Never rub frostbitten skin or submerge your hands or feet directly into hot water; use warm water or a warm washcloth instead. If you do not feel sensation returning to your body, or if the skin begins to turn gray, go to an emergency room immediately.