IBS/D folks: extremely dry skin?

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Marsky
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 1956
   Posted 1/21/2009 3:35 PM (GMT -7)   
Does anyone here who struggles with IBS/D experience extremely dry skin to the point where their hands just crack and bleed, for no reason? And any stray piece of paper you handle seems to get inside these cuts, re-aggravating them again. I've always had dry sensitive skin but ever since I had cancer and now IBS/D symptoms, my hands are a mess right about now - the middle of winter. Bandaids seem to help as I sleep, but then thru out the day as I have to keep washing my hands at work (school cafeteria), they're a mess by this time of day again.

I sometimes joke I wish I could just submerge my hands into two huge tubs of vaseline as I sleep. LOL!

Just wondering if anyone else notices this as well.

Mary
Marsky/Mary's story.....
- Diagnosed with rectal cancer, April 1999 - Stage I, no treatment necessary
(5 hour colon resection: 90% sigmoid removed, 15 inches of colon removed, gall bladder removed, given temporary colostomy)
- Colostomy reversal, June 1999
- Left with IBS/D symptoms, multiple bm's every day
- On a low residue diet at least 75% of the time
- Takes Colace 50 mg each evening

All in all I do okay, I just use the bathroom A LOT! But I survived and beat cancer!


redee2moov
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 68
   Posted 1/29/2009 7:05 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi Mary,

I do not have IBS-D, (and my IBS-C is history) but I do have issues with dry skin, and my wife has even more dry skin issues. Winter (in Minnesota) increases the challenge, and I assume that diarhea, with it's dehydrating tendency would certainly add to it. Also, if you limit your dietary oils and fats (which many IBS'rs do), that doesn't help the situation either.

A couple years ago, in an attempt to eat healthier, I had cut fats and oils almost to nothing in my diet. My skin started looking like one of those dried up lake beds.
 
I have since brought oils back into my diet. I still limit my fat intake. My skin has thanked me for that. I have also tried several oils and lotions for my skin, and am convinced each person needs to go through trial and error to see what works for them.
 
I use a olive oil/aloe blend soap called "Kiss My Face" for showers and washing. Many soaps will dry your skin, especially avoid anything astingent, (unlike the old Zest commercial a little soap film can benefit you if it is not disagreeable to your body, or full of chemicals). Also, avoid "hot" showers. Go for as warm as is comfortable, even cool if you can handle it.
 
I have had little luck with lotion, I think partly because they tend to have more water than oil in them, and oil is what works best for me. For maintenance of my skin I will use a cold pressed sesame oil (very warming) or olive oil, with nothing added (no perfumes, etc).
 
My wife has suffered from chronic dry lips for about 40 years. She has used a wide range of products, even prescriptions, and has finally discovered the blessing of vitamin E oil. She says they have never been so soft (and I can vouch for at least the last 26 years).
 
Her feet have been drying up for several years and are very crusty and cracking. For the past month she has been soaking them at night, in straight Castor oil (recommended by her natural care doctor). After soaking she puts socks on and plastic bags for overnight. Although she has not been as diligent as recommended, there has still been a dramatic improvement (my guess is that this could helpful for your hands, since they suffer so much during the day).
 
She has also been very happy with a vitamin E/castor oil blend for her body as well. But continues to use a variety of lotions, mostly for convenience.
 
One thing I have learned is whether you use lotions or oils, natural or other, they need to be washed off daily, because they seem to cause irritation if left on too long. And don't use old lotions or oils. They do spoil over time.
 
Experiment with all types. Coconut oils is a little on the cool side, but may prove too light. olive and sunflower are medium, sesame warmer and castor the warmest. and anything with aloe or vitamin E in it will assist with any needed healing.
 
Hope you find something here that is helpful.
 
I also wanted to say that I always enjoy reading your comments to others on this forum. You are always so pleasant and supportive. I wish you well.

Marsky
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 1956
   Posted 1/30/2009 7:11 AM (GMT -7)   
reedee2moov - thank you so much for your reply. And your kind words. Maybe I do need more oils in my diet. I've been trying to treat the end results - the dry, flaky skin but perhaps I need to prevent it from happening in the first place. Ironically our Vet recommends flax seed oil mixed in with our Golden Retriever's dry food. I buy this at the health food store and it has to be kept in the fridge. The clerk at the store says it's great for humans - LOL. She suggests you mix it in with applesauce or yogurt. I tried that once but it tasted terrible! Our dog likes it though....good thing! Her coat is thick and shiny. Her skin not dried out (she would develop what Vets call "hot spots", licking a spot on her paws until it was raw). So anyway, each time I buy this oil for the dog I wonder, maybe I should be ingesting this oil too. There might be another way to eat it? But I do like your wife's suggestions, castor oil. Never would have thought of that but I could try it. What do I have to lose? I have soaked my hands in warm water with generous squirts of baby oil. That combination before bedtime, coupled with thick hand lotion seems to help me greatly too.

Now I have tried a hand lotion from Avon that seems to be best one in decades I've tried. It's among their Moisture Therapy line of products. The specific one I really like is their Restorative Rescue Balm. Not to be confused with their Deep Healing Hand Cream (which I accidentally ordered, it's more irritating than the balm). The balm is very, very thick. It seems to seep into my skin and even if I wash my hands later, they're still soft after I've washed them.

Trouble is I can't apply this balm before cooking, talking on the phone or watching TV with a remote. You have to time when you apply it, so it doesn't stick to anything else and you don't need to touch anything!

But again, I appreciate your very helpful suggestions and reply! I enjoy reading your replies as well.

Take care.....
Mary
Marsky/Mary's story.....
- Diagnosed with rectal cancer, April 1999 - Stage I, no treatment necessary
(5 hour colon resection: 90% sigmoid removed, 15 inches of colon removed, gall bladder removed, given temporary colostomy)
- Colostomy reversal, June 1999
- Left with IBS/D symptoms, multiple bm's every day
- On a low residue diet at least 75% of the time
- Takes Colace 50 mg each evening

All in all I do okay, I just use the bathroom A LOT! But I survived and beat cancer!


CherryB
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/9/2009 12:18 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi there, hope Im not too late to reply. I have IBS-D (and have had for 8 years) I now work in packaging and its playing havoc with my legs and hands from the dust and cardboard but having IBS is making it worse! I use cocoa butter on my hands and hawaiian tropic coconut butter on my legs and its helping. They itch like mad too sometimes.

Marsky
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 1956
   Posted 2/9/2009 9:13 PM (GMT -7)   
Cherry - definitely not too late to respond. I appreciate your suggestion too.

It's warmer now so my skin is less dry. But it's almost always dry, if that makes any sense. Never soft, like it should look. But not as dry that it just cracks and bleeds if I bend my fingers.

I'll possibly try the cocoa butter. I used it years ago when I was pregnant with my two babies, for stretch marks.
Marsky/Mary's story.....
- Diagnosed with rectal cancer, April 1999 - Stage I, no treatment necessary
(5 hour colon resection: 90% sigmoid removed, 15 inches of colon removed, gall bladder removed, given temporary colostomy)
- Colostomy reversal, June 1999
- Left with IBS/D symptoms, multiple bm's every day
- On a low residue diet at least 75% of the time
- Takes Colace 50 mg each evening

All in all I do okay, I just use the bathroom A LOT! But I survived and beat cancer!


Normal
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 263
   Posted 2/16/2009 7:27 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Marsky, Havent been on here for months but Ive had IBS-D for over half of my life, Im 51 so too long. I have had the extreme dyr skin for the last 5 years. OF course Ive talked to several Dr. After every diaognosis and prescrition available I have found that Aveeno Intense Relief CREAM is the best. Dont use lotions only cream. I also use the aveeno hand cream. There is a CVS brand of hand cream that is a little cheaper. When I get really bad I take an aveeno oatmeal bath. Anything with oatmeal is very soothing to my skin. Avon has a oatmeal body lotion that I use in the summer when. Have to have the aveeno cream in the winter though. Take care, Normal

Marsky
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 1956
   Posted 2/17/2009 4:55 AM (GMT -7)   
Normal - my daughter prefers the Aveeno Intensive Hand Cream too. I have tried it, and like it. But like my IBS, my skin seems to respond to certain products or approaches and then it stops helping. When I discovered the thick balm from Avon, I thought I have found GOLD! It's so thick and even if you wash your hands later, they still feel soft without more lotion. But now my skin doesn't respond as well as it did when I first tried the balm (it's very hard to find on their website, it's one product among their Moisture Therapy Intensive Hand Lotions and Creams, but look for the word "Balm").

Now I've used a tablespoon or two of Aveeno bath powder in my sitz bath when I have had a string of D days. It's great for soothing that part of the body.

But I never thought about taking a bath with it. I might try that! Thanks for the tip.

All of this said, since you mention oatmeal is very beneficial to you, and it seems as if it is for me at times too, I wonder if we both ate hot oatmeal each morning if we'd notice an improvement in our skin? Using oatmeal internally and externally?

I am on a low fiber diet but I could try hot oatmeal soon when it's a day I'm not working. In case it brought on D. I don't think one small bowlful would though.

Do you also eat hot oatmeal?

Thanks for your reply - normal - and BTW, I like your nickname. Normal! I swear each time I see it, I just crack up.....obviously Marsky is just a nickname my hubby gave me in our dating days, over 22 years ago. My first name is boring Mary. So I thought, hey I'll use Marsky. But I like your nick better!!!! LOL
Marsky/Mary's story.....
- Diagnosed with rectal cancer, April 1999 - Stage I, no treatment necessary
(5 hour colon resection: 90% sigmoid removed, 15 inches of colon removed, gall bladder removed, given temporary colostomy)
- Colostomy reversal, June 1999
- Left with IBS/D symptoms, multiple bm's every day
- On a low residue diet at least 75% of the time
- Takes Colace 50 mg each evening

All in all I do okay, I just use the bathroom A LOT! But I survived and beat cancer!


Normal
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 263
   Posted 2/22/2009 10:26 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks Marksy, Nice to make someone laugh. Sometimes I feel like I am so down on this forum. The sitz bath is a really good idea, the avveno is so expensive. I hate to use it alot. I also buy the CVS brand for the bath. I am now using the soap also.  Another tip the Derrm. dr. gave me is to not use shower gel or liquid soap at all. Of course that is impossible in public restrooms and at work. But at home he said to use Dove. I just started using the aveeno bar. My skin that was cracking is really good after the repair cream. I dont eat oatmeal but that is a good idea. I, like you have a routine to get thru the week at work. I eat a breakfast bar with probiotics and ONLY TURKEY for lunch. Boring but safe. I stay away from milk except cheese and yougurt. Still have bad days but can control untill get to bathroom. I can eat at some resterants and not make it home. redface We love Texas roadhouse and I have found that if I drink a Margarita turn I am fine after eating there. I think it relaxes my gut as well as the rest of me. That is what the Donnatal does also. I have a great fiance who goes to store with me and I can make my dashes to restroom if need to. I really feel for single people with this. I was a widow for 7 years before met my guy. Not easy to even feel like meeting people with IBS. But there are people out there. Gotta go, so nice to talk to you.

sebastian27
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 2/27/2009 1:06 PM (GMT -7)   

I know exactly what you mean.  I've had IBS for 17yrs (I'm 27) and I have horrible eczema.  My skin is sooo sensitive.  I have to use free and clear detergent, Dove only for my showers, no fabric softners or dryer sheets or my skin gets worse.  I use Eucerin.  It helps but it burns when applying it if your skin is slicing. 

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