Skin in the game: Two common skin problems and solutions for men


Once I was on the junior varsity basketball workforce in highschool, I wasn’t shocked after I developed a case of itchy, flaky athlete’s foot. In any case, I used to be an “athlete,” so I assumed it was an indication of dedication and exhausting work.

I used to be shocked when my mom informed me the reality: it was attributable to poor foot hygiene, not my dribbling expertise.

Quick-forward nearly 4 a long time, and I’m rather more diligent about skincare. Nonetheless, some pores and skin points plague me at occasions, like they do many males. Here’s a take a look at two frequent issues and options.

Dry pores and skin

Signs of dry pores and skin embody scaly patches (with or with out redness), itching, and total dryness. You will get dry pores and skin year-round — from the heavy warmth of summer time to the bitter chilly of winter. Solar publicity damages pores and skin, leaving it thinner and fewer more likely to maintain in moisture over time. Additionally, getting older pores and skin produces much less of the pure oils that hold pores and skin lubricated.

Remedy. The primary line of protection is a moisturizer that softens and smooths pores and skin with water and lipids (fat). Some moisturizers appeal to water to the pores and skin and seal it in. Others stop moisture loss by coating pores and skin with a thick, impermeable layer.

  • Petroleum jelly. This waxy, greasy substance stops water loss with out clogging pores. It may be utilized by itself however can also be an ingredient in lots of moisturizers and ointments. As a result of petroleum jelly doesn’t include water, it’s greatest used whereas the pores and skin continues to be damp after bathing to seal in moisture.
  • Mineral oil. Mineral oil has the identical impact however and not using a greasy feeling. It additionally must be used whereas pores and skin is damp.
  • Moisturizing lotions and lotions. These merchandise include each water and oils. They’re much less greasy and extra cosmetically interesting than petroleum jelly or oils. Search for moisturizers with not less than one of many following elements: glycerin, urea, pyroglutamic acid, sorbitol, lactic acid, lactate salts, or alpha hydroxy acids.

Prevention. Attempt just a few modifications to assist stop dry pores and skin:

  • Add moisture to the air with a humidifier or a pan of water set atop the radiator.
  • Within the bathe or bathtub, use lukewarm water (sizzling water can dry the pores and skin by stripping it of pure oils).
  • Select nondrying soaps with no abrasives or irritants. Tremendous-fatted soaps or cleaning bars are much less drying than common, liquid, or antibacterial soaps.
  • To retain the water your pores and skin absorbs whereas showering or bathing, apply jelly, oil, or moisturizer instantly afterward.

Athlete’s foot

Athlete’s foot is brought on by dermatophytes, a gaggle of fungi on the floor of the pores and skin. Inform-tale indicators embody intense itching; cracked, blistered, or peeling areas of pores and skin, particularly between the toes; and redness and scaling on the soles. Dermatophytes thrive in heat, moist environments like swimming pools, showers, and locker rooms the place individuals stroll with naked toes. The nice and cozy, moist setting of sweaty socks and footwear encourages them to develop.

Remedy. First, attempt an over-the-counter antifungal ointment, cream, or powder, equivalent to clotrimazole (Lotrimin AF, Mycelex, generic), terbinafine (Lamisil AT, Silka,), or miconazole (Lotrimin AF spray, Micatin). It could take weeks for an an infection to enhance, and recurrences are frequent. If signs do not enhance after a number of weeks, seek the advice of a health care provider, who might prescribe antifungal tablets.

Prevention. Retaining toes clear and dry is one of the best ways to chase away athlete’s foot. Additionally, do the next:

  • Wash your toes nicely on daily basis, and put on a clear pair of socks after your bathtub or bathe.
  • Take time to dry your toes totally (together with every toe and particularly the net area between the toes) after you bathe, bathe, or swim.
  • Put on flip-flops or sandals round public swimming pools and in gymnasium locker rooms and showers.
  • Put on moisture-wicking socks that take up sweat.
  • Don’t put on the identical footwear two days in a row. Give footwear a 24-hour break between wearings to air out and dry.

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