Home >>  Skin Conditions and Diseases >>  Scaly Skin  

Dry Scaly Skin Patches

Scaly Skin Rash: Causes and Treatment of Dry Scaly and Itchy Skin Condition

Scaly skin is most commonly caused by extreme weather or certain medications. Certain skin conditions like Ichthyosis, Psoriasis and Eczema can also cause dry, scaly and flaky skin. Your skin contains sebaceous glands that secrete oil which helps to seal moisture into your skin and keep it from drying. Harsh soaps and detergents as well as frequent hot water showers can strip your skin of these natural oils leaving it dry and flaky. In some cases, children are born with patches of dark scaly skin (usually on the legs). In such hereditary cases, laser treatment is necessary to completely eliminate all traces of this skin condition.

Scaly skin can be due to a variety of skin conditions, the most common one being Ichthyosis Vulgaris. This skin disorder is hereditary and leads to dry, scaly skin generally observed on the arms and legs of the individual. Very often this condition is only apparent during summer or winter due to the extreme weather changes. Although this condition is not contagious it is uncomfortable and unsightly. A person suffering from this skin condition will have to use heavy duty moisturizers to ensure minimal skin-moisture loss. In severe cases, a mild antifungal and antibacterial medicated cream would be a good option as scaly skin is prone to infections. If you suffer from Ichthyosis Vulgaris, you can mix a little almond oil with whole milk and use it as a moisturizer before your bath. Milk contains lactic acid that helps to slough off dead skin while almond oil prevents soap related oil loss.

Other rashes that may cause scaly skin include Psoriasis, Pityriasis Rosea and Atopic dermatitis (a form of eczema). Psoriasis generally affects the elbows and knees and is treated with topical creams and in severe cases phototherapy and immunosuppressant injections. Pityriasis Rosea primarily affects adolescents and as this condition only lasts for a couple of weeks, no treatment is required. Since this condition often causes intense itching, it would be better to avoid regular soaps and use medicated soaps instead. Atopic Dermatitis causes scaly patches of skin on the arms legs and scalp and can only be successfully treated with prescription-strength cortisone creams.

A faulty diet can hamper sebum production and aggravate (and even cause) scaly skin. Include healthy fats (from flaxseed, salmon, sardines etc.) in your daily diet to accelerate sebum production. It is also best to use a perfume-free moisturizer directly after a shower and before going to bed. In all cases of scaly skin, irrespective of their causes, it is always wise to use a soft brush to exfoliate the entire body while bathing.