"Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star,
Look how clean my two hands are,
Soap and water, wash and scrub,
Get those germs off rub-a-dub,
Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star,
Look how clean my two hands are!"
When you get tired of washing your hands for 20 seconds to the ABC song... try the "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" song instead! (fun mind-blowing fact that I only recently discovered well into adulthood -- the tune for these songs is EXACTLY the same! As is Baa Baa Black Sheep...also Narwhals are real and not just magical sea unicorns made-up by the movie Elf...whaaaaaat?!)
After the last several months of this pandemic, I think we are all well-versed in how important it is to wash our hands so that we don't spread germs, particularly after being in public places, using the toilet, before meals, after we cough or sneeze, and whenever our hands are dirty. And now that so many of our kids are going back to school, they will likely be washing their hands even more.
But with all this hand washing and sanitizing, dry skin, eczema breakouts, and contact dermatitis (rashes from irritation or exposure to allergens) have become even more troublesome. What can we do about it?
Here are some tips that have helped soothe my own dry, cracked hands:
1. Wash your hands with a fragrance-free, mild and gentle cleanser. Many soaps are detergent-based and can be harsh on the skin, and fragrances can especially inflame already dry and irritated skin even more.
2. Wash with lukewarm water instead of hot water as the hot water can strip our skin of its natural oils and make it more dry.
3. Effective hand sanitizers typically contain at least 60% alcohol which can be drying to the skin. Look for ones that are fragrance-free.
4. Moisturize with a thick, bland, fragrance-free moisturizer immediately after washing or sanitizing your hands. Since the hands have thicker skin than other parts of the body, creams and ointments tend to get absorbed better and provide more protection than lotions that evaporate quickly.
5. Keep moisturizers everywhere -- by all the sinks, in your car, in your purse, on your desk. For children who are back in school, I recommend parents send them with a travel tube/container of moisturizer that they can throw in their backpack or keep in their pocket so they'll always have it on hand (pun intended :D) when they need it. (If you're able to send them with their own sensitive skin-friendly cleanser or sanitizer to use when cleaning their hands, even better!)
6. Overnight treatments for extra TLC: apply thick moisturizer (creams or ointments) on your hands and cover them with white cotton gloves. This will allow the moisturizer to penetrate the skin and prevent water loss so that your hands are well-hydrated and prepared for the day.
7. If your skin is particularly red, itchy, or painful, and moisturizer isn't helping, you may need to see your friendly board-certified dermatologist for further medical treatment.
The most important tip: moisturize, Moisturize, MOISTURIZE!
"Now I know my ABCs...
of how to keep my hands happy!"
Let's love the skin we're in by keeping it happy and healthy!
Written by: Meena Julapalli, M.D.
Growing up in Alabama, Louisiana, and Texas, Dr. Julapalli is a Southern girl through and through. She graduated cum laude from Rice University with a B.A. in Ancient Mediterranean Civilizations. She completed medical school, pediatrics residency, and dermatology residency at Baylor College of Medicine and fellowship training in pediatric dermatology at the University of Colorado. She became board-certified in pediatrics, dermatology, and pediatric dermatology, and served on faculty at Dell Children's Medical Center and Children's Hospital Colorado as an Assistant Professor of Dermatology. After practicing for the last 7 years in Austin and Denver, Dr. Julapalli knew it was time to return to her hometown of Houston, Texas. She is proud and excited to help her fellow Houstonians with all their skin needs with her Pediatric Dermatology Practice, BLUEBIRD DERMATOLOGY!
In honor of the upcoming National Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB) Awareness week, we wanted to share this great piece from our friend, Rachael Wrobel about how her mama mothered her well, even despite the challenges of EB.
I am fortunate enough to be Mama to three little girls. Shortly after my eldest daughter’s first birthday (about 4 years ago) I noticed her hair was thinning. I was told by many it was just typical baby hair loss until it just couldn’t be described at “typical” any longer.
Join us for a quick and very insightful video interview with Dr. Alana Kennedy-Nasser as she shares with us how to keep kids safe as they go back to school in-person and how to keep kids developmentally “on track” as they attend school virtually.
What questions do you have for back to school content experts? Read on for some brilliant questions and answers from this super smart teacher mama, Lacy Cunningham, M.A.Ed.
Online learning can be a fun experience filled with lots of great experiences; but as humans, we were meant to interact with one another and have companionship. How can we develop ways to ensure kids stay engaged while learning in a different setting?
This year, the normal first day of school jitters will likely be accompanied by some new concerns that we have not encountered before. Lindsey O’Sullivan, Child Life Specialist, provides guidance on how to navigate these conversations with your child.
As we prepare for school to begin, those of us that are sending our kiddos slowly back out into the world may find ourselves explaining what has changed (again) in the last few months. Dr. Chad Brandt, a therapist who specializes in anxiety in children and teens, offers us a few guideposts for talking about the coronavirus with children.
Validation means to acknowledge and sometimes normalize someone’s feelings or reactions to a specific scenario. Validation continues the conversation, creates trust, and helps children communicate their truest feelings with the adults around them.
We should not shelter our children from our disappointment. While it is natural to have this desire, it is not a good idea to want to keep them from knowing that we, as adults, sometimes have “bad” (i.e. not the most fun) feelings.
In February we launched a reboot of our #Iwasmadeamasterpiece social media campaign from this summer with a fun valentines themed twist.
As part of our birthday surprise, A Children’s House for the Soul announced the launch of our public capital campaign to buy 1972 W. Dallas and renovate the space into the first ever community building dedicated to the social, emotional and spiritual support of children with chronic skin conditions/birthmarks and their families.
The 2020 Camp Dermadillo Reunion was a great success! We had more than 60 friends new and “old” come to Speedy’s Fast Track for a great day of go-kart racing, mini golf, laser tag, arcade games and more.
Love the Skin You’re In Family Day 2019 is officially in the books! We had a great time and learned a lot and I am so grateful for the wonderful day!
As the month of November is upon us, I know we are all going to begin reflecting on what we are thankful for, and secretly looking towards the new year thinking of things we hope to come. I just wanted to write you a letter to thank you, Skin, for all the ways you’ve been there for me and shaped me as a person. I never really stopped to think about it before, but in a way, you have made all the difference.
We are so thankful to Joyce and Leah for both sharing their story about Leah’s eczema.
While eczema can seem common, it takes on a lot of different forms. Also, many people don’t understand how much pain and discomfort can come from eczema. Here are a few ways to explain eczema to different ages.
Hello, my name is Megan and I have alopecia. It is alopecia awareness month and I would like to share my story. The basic description of alopecia is that hair falls out in patches, or total loss of hair on the scalp or the body. Alopecia is different for everyone, and for me, I went through different stages.
Alopecia areata is a common autoimmune disorder that often results in unpredictable hair loss. It affects roughly 6.8 million people in the United States.In the majority of cases, hair falls out in small patches around the size of a quarter. For most people, the hair loss is nothing more than a few patches, though in some cases it can be more extreme.
In honor of National Alopecia Awareness Month, one of our Mom’s is sharing her and her daughter’s path over the last 10 years since diagnosis. Thank you Stacy for sharing your family and your faith with us!
As parents, one of the best things we can do is to work with educators, school counselors and nurses to help to develop a coping plan for how to manage school.