10 Ways To Care For Your Skin For Older Adults

The skin is the most important part of your body. It protects your organs and bones from the elements, and it serves as a protective layer for your muscles, veins, arteries, and nerves. You are born with this protective and elastic part of your body to take Care For Your Skin.

However, as you become older, so too does your skin. Collagen and elastin production slow down, causing your skin to lose some of its elasticity. Older skin can also become thinner, more fragile and dryer. Luckily, there are simple steps you can take to improve how your skin – and you – feel and look. 

Have Short, Warm Baths for Care For Your Skin

First, keep in mind that cleanliness is key, when it comes to the skin. Since your body is always subject to the elements, so is your skin. Not cleaning your skin can lead to not only a negative appearance, but also infections. 

However, it’s important to note that how you clean your skin can either work for you or against you. Taking long, hot showers and baths can lead to skin drying out. Instead, try to use warm water and spend only about 10 minutes in the bath/shower. 

Use a mild cleanser or emollient rather than soaps, which can be harsh and dry out your skin. Plus, avoid using a lot of bath oils, or else you’ll risk falling in the bathtub or shower and injuring yourself. After the shower or bath, try to pat yourself dry, leaving a little moisture on your skin following a bath/shower. 

Keep Skin Moisturized

The truth is, dry skin can lead to itchiness. So, what causes dry and itchy skin in the first place? Here are some possible causes for these skin conditions:

  • Sweating
  • Oily skin
  • Not drinking plenty of liquids
  • Stress
  • Excessive time in the sun
  • Sun tanning
  • Exposure to very dry air
  • Smoking, etc.

So, to keep your skin hydrated, consider using a fragrance-free moisturizer. Aim to moisturize your skin each day, as well as after a bath/shower. This will help to ease any dryness or itchy skin and help to replenish your skin’s protective barrier. 

Use Natural, Fragrance-Free Products

Whether it’s moisturizers, perfumes, colognes or any other type of skin-care product, aim to go fragrance-free. 

Products that contain fragrances can often irritate your skin. “Aim to use products made entirely from natural ingredients instead. Look out for products that contain ingredients such as aloe vera, olive oil, coconut oil or vitamins A and E, to help prevent you developing dry and itchy skin” says Jane Still, a health writer at State of writing and Paper Fellows.

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Invest In A Humidifier- Care For Your Skin

Dry air can cause your skin to feel dry and itchy. Air conditioning and heating can both strip the air of humidity. The winter months can be especially uncomfortable, as the air is usually drier and can lead to redness and cracking of the skin. Use a humidifier to add moisture to your home and help hydrate your skin. Humidifiers can also help manage clear breathing, especially during sleep.

Eat A Balanced Diet

Eating a balance diet is extremely important for your overall wellbeing, as well as for your skin. 

Try to eat foods which are rich in vitamins, nutrients and essential minerals. Vitamins are especially important as they help to make older skin more resilient and less prone to skin damage, including bruising. Try to incorporate some vitamin-rich foods into your diet, such as green vegetables, melons, nuts, avocados and wheat germ.

Keep Hydrated

Fluids are essential for keeping your skin hydrated. However, water is the most important thing to have in the body. As well as preventing dry skin, water also helps to flush out toxins and reduces wrinkles. Moreover, it is crucial for helping to keep you healthy overall. 

So, be sure to drink plenty of water every day. The recommended amount is about eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day, according to Healthline. No matter what your diet is, water should always be your daily priority.

Stop Smoking

Smoking already causes a range of health problems. As well as aging your skin, it destroys collagen and elastin (which give skin their elasticity) and also causes premature wrinkling.

Smoking can also prevent your skin from healing as quickly by reducing blood flow, as the blood vessels in the outer layer of the skin narrow. When this happens, it prevents the skin from getting the oxygen and nutrients it needs. Smoking also reduces the amount of moisture content of the body, leading to dry skin. 

“Therefore, consider limiting your smoking habits, or quit altogether. While quitting smoking might not happen overnight, it’s still important to commit to reducing your smoking times and, eventually, quit” says Olivia Lane, a health blogger at Academized and Lia Help.

Use Sunscreen

Prolonged sun exposure can lead to many health issues, including wrinkling, sunburn, skin discoloration and skin cancer. Whether you have to work outside for your job, having fun in the sun, or simply out and about, being in the sun can make your skin cry out for help.

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So, try to wear fully-protective clothing, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Sunscreen must be the recommended SPF levels, preferably SPF 30 or higher, every day. This can help to reduce dry and thinning skin. Reduce your exposure to harmful UV rays by seeking shade when you are outdoors.

Wear Gloves When Gardening

When you are working on your garden or around your house, you may expose your skin to some chemicals and other products which can irritate your skin and cause it to become dry. Instead, opt for gloves as a way to protect your skin from dryness, as well as reducing your chances of injury. 

You may also want to protect the rest of your skin when gardening. Consider wearing long-sleeved shirts or a jacket when, say, cutting the grass or doing manual outdoor labor. This prevents things like sticks, leaves, or any other natural element from touching, soiling, or scraping your skin. Plus, a wide-brimmed hat can help shade you from the sun as you work outside.   

See A Doctor

Finally, the dark reality of skin is when you start to see significant changes to your skin. Chances are, you might be experiencing the following:

  • Sores that don’t heal right away

  • Bleeding moles, OR

  • An unfamiliar growth on the body

These are common signs of skin cancer. Without medical attention, the problems will only get worse.

The good news is, skin cancer is curable when you and your doctor catch it in time, before it spreads to other parts of the body. Therefore, check your skin regularly for any abnormalities or growths and if you notice any changes, make sure to discuss these with your doctor. Similarly, if you continue to have dry and itchy skin ask your doctor for help and advice. They may carry out checks for kidney disease or diabetes or provide you with specific recommendations or creams/emollients to offer some relief. 

Wrapping Up

As you can see, there are many ways to care for your skin as you age. Plus, it’s important to remember that your skin needs to be checked on every so often. When in doubt, consult your doctor or physician and see what skin treatment option(s) are right for you.