What Does It Mean When Your Elbows Are Dry

Skin can be an excellent indicator of your health. Though most skin problems like dry skin, breakouts, and itchiness are primarily just annoying, the condition of your skin can often be a factor in a health condition or disease. Luckily, many skin problems can be improved with the right medication, a relief for many who experience itch.

One of the more troublesome issues comes from having dry elbows, which can mean itchiness, scaling, cracking, and peeling. The itch can be intense. Elbows don't contain many natural oils, causing dry skin. That lack of natural oil, combined with rubbing against your clothes, means they can easily lose what little moisture they have and become itchy, and even cracked. If you normally have dry skin, dry elbows can be an ongoing problem.

Though the vast majority of dry elbows result from simple friction from clothing, an allergy to the fabric of a blouse or sweater may be causing the problem, and you may have contact dermatitis according to Medical News Today.

It's also possible that dry elbows can be an early warning sign of eczema, psoriasis, and diabetes according to Verywell Health. They can also occur from certain medications, including retinoids (used to reduce acne, fine lines, and age spots) and diuretics (prescribed for high blood pressure and water retention). Also, while exfoliants can soften your skin in several ways, they can also result in dryness.

What to do for dry elbows

Sometimes, harsh or chemically loaded exfoliants can be the culprit, so simply removing them from your beauty routine can do the trick. reports Good Housekeeping. Another thing to avoid is taking long, hot showers which can deplete your skin's essential oils. Then, start working on getting your skin rehydrated.

Once you take away whatever may be irritating your elbows, it's time to replenish and nourish them. Choose a moisturizer without added fragrance and apply it regularly. Optimally, you'll do this daily when you get out of the shower. If you wait too long to apply moisturizer, you're missing the window when your skin has the most moisture, and that's when moisturizers work the best.

The moisturizer should contain emollients, to soothe dry skin and soften it, and humectants and occlusives to seal in moisture, according to MindBodyGreen. It also helps to wear soft clothing so your skin doesn't become further aggravated.

If dry skin don't improve, see a dermatologist to get targeted help and relief.