How to look after your skin during winter holidays

Washington, Dec 2 : The combination of freezing temperatures, limited sleep, sugary treats and cocktails during a holiday can be very troublesome for the skin, according to a dermatologist.

"Acne, cold sores, eczema and dry, puffy skin are common this time of year due to the harsh elements and excessive celebrating that often takes place during the holidays," Rebecca Tung, MD, director, Division of Dermatology, Loyola University Health System said.

Dr. Tung offers some of the following tips to make the skin look its holiday best.

Incase for acne, while indulging in a sweet dessert or toasting with a cocktail is alright, too much of a good thing can have its consequences, therefore there should be plenty of water intake, mind what one eats and get enough sleep.

However, if a pimple still does break out, care for it with a salicylic spot treatment and avoid picking it to minimize the risk of scarring.

A dermatologist should be seen if the pimple is more like a volcano as the spot can be shrunk down with a tiny injection of cortisone.

A cold sore can be triggered by extreme changes in temperature, busy schedule and too little sleep.

Most of the time the virus that causes cold sores lies dormant in facial nerves for those who have been exposed to it, but there are prescription medications one can take at the first tingle to prevent a full cold sore outbreak.

Cleaning it with a mild cleanser and applying a bit of fragrance-free moisturizer will help calm it.

During winters, in order to avoid dry, puffy skin, one should pamper the skin by using mild, fragrance-free cleansers to wash your face followed by a fragrance-free moisturizer to keep dryness away.

If the holiday diet is too heavy on salt or cocktails, the skin can look bloated and tired, therefore hydration and moderation are essential to avoid puffiness.

Also, lastly if despite best efforts, one develops patches of eczema, reach for an over-the-counter oral antihistamine like loratidine or fexofenadine to reduce any inflammation or itching.

Hydrocortisone can often calm eczema but if your skin doesn't respond to this treatment, a dermatologist can help.

--ANI (Posted on 02-12-2013)

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