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Excesssive dryness from Hypothyroidism

By August 5, 2010 - 6:10pm
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My mother has Hypothyroidism and it is causing her to have HORRIFICALLY dry skin and it is causing her to not be able to sleep at night. I have bought every cream and "potion" possible. Is there any medicated cream or natural cream that anyone can suggest? I will pay anything and go anywhere to get it.
I welcome ANY and ALL suggestions.

Best wishes all!

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EmpowHER Guest

I am sorry to hear your mother is suffering from her dry skin. I hope she is better now. Dry skin and other skin conditions are associated with hypothyroidism, including cases where the person's hypothyroidism is not being treated properly by their doctor. I suffered terrible dry skin, cracked heels before I was properly treated. I discovered the hard way that the lack of awareness in the medical community is pervasive. I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism following the birth of my first son in 2006 and experienced many of the symptoms you have listed. I trusted my doctors completely assuming they knew everything there was to know about this disease, especially when I became pregnant again in late 2008. How wrong I was! Under their care my TSH, the gold standard for measuring thyroid function, rose high above the safe range for pregnancy and I miscarried. I vowed to myself that I would research everything there was to know about hypothyroidism and warn other women. I fulfilled my vow and launched my blog Hypothyroidmom.com in memory of the baby I lost to hypothyroidism.

October 21, 2012 - 5:58am
HERWriter Guide

Hi Alda -
Here are a few tips from the American College of Dermatology which may help your mom.

Use lukewarm water for baths or showers. Hot water dries out the skin. Try to limit time to fifteen minutes or less in the bath or shower. Bathing should be done no more than once a day. Bathing too frequently removes the natural oils from the skin causing or aggravating dryness.

Avoid using harsh soaps that dry the skin. The recommended soaps are Dove, Olay and Basis. Even better than soap are skin cleansers such as Cetaphil Lotion, Oilatum-AD and Aquanil.

Deodorant soaps are often very harsh and drying. If you need them, limit their use to areas that develop an odor such as the armpits, genital area, and feet.

Avoid vigorous use of a washcloth in cleansing. When toweling dry, do not rub the skin. Blot or pat dry so there is still some moisture left on the skin.

Next apply a moisturizer to the skin. The best time to do this is immediately after a bath or shower so that the moisturizer holds in the moisture from the shower. Dermatologists recommend Cetaphil Cream, Moisturel Cream, or Eucerin Cream. If you have severely dry skin, apply an oil to the still moist skin such as Neutrogena Light Sesame Oil, Hermal Body Oil, Alpha-Keri Oil or Robathol, then apply a moisturizing cream and also apply the moisturizer at bedtime.

All areas that are exposed to the sun, such as the face, ears, hands, and back of the neck should have a moisturizer containing sun block or a sunscreen of SPF 15 or greater applied daily.

For laundry, use "All-free", "Tide-free" or "Cheer-free" detergents. Avoid using fabric softeners, especially in the dryer. Keep irritating fabrics away from your skin. Don't wear clothing made of wool or other "scratchy" fabrics. Use cotton percale sheets on your bed.

Use a humidifier in your home during the heating season. If sweating causes itching, modify your activity and surroundings to minimize sweating. Work and sleep in a fairly constant temperature (68-75o F) and humidity (45-55%). Remember to keep drinking plenty of water and other liquids to keep your skin moist from the inside, too.

Hope this helps!

August 5, 2010 - 6:22pm
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