Xerosis, or dry skin is characterized by itchy, cracked, scaly skin. It is usually located on the legs, but can be located on any area of the body. If not properly treated, dry skin may lead to eczema, dermatitis, ulcers or infection. A dermatologist may recommend prescription lotions.

To prevent dry skin, use a humidifier, keep temperatures moderate, avoid long or hot baths and showers, use mild, fragrance-free soaps, and moisturize immediately after bathing. Your dermatologist can advise you on the best soaps and moisturizers for dry skin types.