All About Foot Xerosis

Xerosis is also known as dry skin, and it can appear on any part of the body, including your feet. It has an itchy and tight-feeling on the skin that is flaking off or feeling rough. It is worse than dry skin as it can put you at risk for a bacterial infection when left untreated. If you notice a scaly pattern of dry skin on your feet, then it can be a sign of foot xerosis. Figuring out the cause of your abnormally dry skin and using the right moisturizers are some of the ways that can help heal xerosis. Read on to know more about the symptoms, causes, and treatment of foot xerosis. 

Signs of Foot Xerosis

If the skin on your feet feels tight, itchy, or uncomfortable, these may be signs that you are suffering from xerosis. Here are some of the common symptoms of foot xerosis:

  • Abnormally dry, itchy, and scaly skin on feet.
  • Skin that feels extremely tight.
  • The skin on the feet is moderately flaky.
  • Red or pink irritated skin.
  • Fine cracks on the skin. 

There can be instances when the symptoms are more severe than these signs, which means you have severely dry skin. 

What are the Causes of Foot Xerosis?

Lack of moisture is one of the main causes of foot xerosis. It may be the result of aging or an underlying condition or disease. People who are older and those with diabetes have a higher risk of developing foot xerosis. According to dermatologists, skin conditions like atopic dermatitis, keratosis pilaris, ichthyosis, and psoriasis can also cause dry skin and, when left untreated, may also worsen ad lead to bleeding and cracking. 

Here are some of the other causes of foot xerosis:

  • Medications like diuretics or water pills.
  • Exposure to dry and cold air.
  • Taking baths or showers that are excessively hot. 
  • Over-cleansing the skin.
  • Long exposure to the sun.
  • Using products that have ingredients that can dry out the skin, like alcohol and sodium lauryl sulfate. 

When you leave foot xerosis untreated, it can lead to more severe skin problems, such as bacterial infection and fungal infection. When you see red and sore patches on your skin, they may be early signs of infection. 

How to Treat Foot Xerosis

person scrubbing foot

Most of the time, foot xerosis is painful, irritating, and can cause damage to the skin in the long run. With this, it is very important to treat foot xerosis to keep your skin healthy and prevent infection and disease. Its treatment is similar to how to get rid of dry skin. This means that it can be treated with the use of the right products and skincare routine. Here are some of the treatments of foot xerosis that you can try.

1. Avoid using products with ingredients that dry out your skin.

There are many foot care products out there that you can use. However, to combat foot xerosis, you need to take a look at the products you are using. If any of them contain ingredients like alcohol, retinoid, triclosan, added fragrance, or sodium lauryl sulfate, then it is best to avoid them as they may be contributing to your dry skin. 

2. Use products that are made of natural ingredients. 

When choosing products for your feet, like moisturizers and lotions, it is better to pick those that are made with natural ingredients. Some of the best ingredients for the skin are sunflower seed oil, coconut oil, oatmeal, and honey. You can also try applying honey to your skin, as it is one of the most effective natural moisturizers out there. 

3. Moisturize your feet daily.

For ultimate skin hydration, make sure that you apply moisturizer to your feet immediately after every bath or shower. It’s because during those times, your skin is clean, and the pores are open. If you have a severe case of xerosis, you can apply an ultra-healing lotion or cream before going to bed to accelerate the healing of your skin. 

4. Use a gentle cleanser on your skin.

If you are using a cleanser on your skin, avoid those that contain harsh ones that contain alcohol, as it can remove the natural oils of your skin. Try to search for mild ones that are fragrance-free and those that contain glycerin and propylene. 

5. Exfoliate your skin gently.

You can remove dry skin flakes and refresh the skin on your feet by exfoliating with a wet towel or by using an exfoliating cleanser. However, be careful not to be too excessive when it comes to exfoliating, as it can damage your skin. After exfoliating, make sure that you use an intensive moisturizer to prevent moisture loss. You can also wear socks after applying moisturizer.

6. Always stay hydrated.

Drinking lots of water can also help moisturize the skin. It’s because when you drink water, the cells inside your body are hydrated, and the toxins are flushed out, which may be contributing to dry skin. In addition to drinking water, you can also eat foods that have high water content, like celery, cucumber, and watermelon. 

7. Consult a doctor and ask about prescription medication.

If you have tried different products for your foot xerosis but still experience extreme dryness, maybe it’s time for you to talk to your dermatologist about medicines. Dermatologists may prescribe topical steroid medications to reduce itching and irritation caused by your foot xerosis. 

Foot xerosis is indeed a serious skin condition that you should treat right away. If you experience persistent skin irritation and over-the-counter medications are not working, seeking help from a dermatologist is essential. Make sure that you seek immediate care from a dermatologist if your skin is oozing, large areas of your skin are peeling, or cracks in your skin are bleeding. We hope this post helped you learn more about foot xerosis.