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Jun 16, 2016

Healthy Living: Healthier Skin for the Summer

Taking care of your skin, particularly in the summer months, is important. Exposure to the sun damages your skin extensively and you may not know that some routine practices are bad for you. But how do you contain or reverse the damage? One way is as easy as drinking water. With the summer months upon us, Healthy Living looks at this issue.

 

Marleni Cuellar, Reporting

Summer skin care – no, we’re not just talking about sunburn protection. The increase temperatures at summertime can also lead to dry skin, rashes and other irritations Dermatologist at Belize Medical Associates, Doctor Jorge Lopez Granja, highlights three bad practices you may want to consider during the summer to have healthier skin.

 

Jorge Lopez Granja

Dr. Jorge Lopez Granja, Dermatologist

“First of all drinking water – plenty of water is most important not only for your skin but for your organs, for your system and the rest of your entire body inn a whole. Now, with the skin, if it is healthy or not, it depends how good your skin is doing the protection function in terms of the barrier function and here there are plenty of factors that play a role.”

 

The first thing to look at is the kind of soap that you use.

 

Dr. Jorge Lopez Granja

“Natural factor moisturizer it’s how we call it; its mad up of sugars of free amino acids and oils. If you are into scented products for example most of them have alkalies; substances with a higher pH. Some alkalies affect the skin barrier function. It removes the oil film that our skin is suppose to have and that film is to keep your skin hydrated and to keep microorganisms and irritants off your skin. So once you start using scented products, once you start using loofah while you bathe which will scrub then you are actually getting rid of that oil or that protection and your skin will be more sensitive. I hear often of using exfoliating products. In all honesty, it’s not necessary unless you have a condition life for example like keratosis pilaris, which is little bumps on the skin. But if your skin is normal then the process of shedding the skin happens naturally, there is no need to try to help that process.”

 

Unscented or hypoallergenic are your best options. Another practice that people need to consider changing is how you do your laundry.

 

Dr. Jorge Lopez Granja

“For most of us with normal skin, the choice of soap powder or detergent doesn’t really affect you until something changes. Its summer and you start working out. Often times it’s not about the brand, it’s about the amount that you use. By increasing the amount of detergent and even more by using fabric softener what will happen is the moment you start sweating the residue of the chemicals will go into your skin and then slowly the irritation starts until two to three weeks later when you get home and you have an itching at the end of the day especially when you remove your clothes; you have an itching that drives you crazy. For children, usually I do not advise parents to use fabric softer to wash their clothes.”

 

The third is to take a break from those hot showers.

 

Dr. Jorge Lopez Granja

“Something that could go against having healthy skin and getting you dry skin is how long your shower last and what is the temperature of the shower. So we recommend against hot water that tends to dry your skin. We also recommend against a shower that takes ten to fifteen minutes.”

 

In this case, lukewarm is fine. There are a lot more areas where skincare is concerned but Dr. Lopez advises that all you have to do is take care of yourself in general.

 

Dr. Jorge Lopez Granja

“To have healthy skin you just want your body to be working properly.”

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