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Cause, Diagnosis and Treatment of Dry Scaly Skin on Legs

Dry scaly skin is a problem which exists not only on your arms, thighs and abdomen sides, but can also exist on your lower legs. In fact, scaly skin here leads to itching and peeling of the skin which is rather irritating in winter when cold weather robs your skin of its moisture.

Causes for dry scaly skin

There are various factors which contribute to dry and scaly skin on the legs like eczema, too much of bathing, the aging process, living in cold temperatures and the amount of time spent outdoors. This is why your skin grows especially dry during winter when temperatures and humidity levels drop to reduce the moisture to your skin.


You know you have dry, scaly skin when you feel roughly textured skin whenever you rub your hands over the skin of your legs. If your skin is especially dry, you will notice cracked skin resembling ridges on the skin. You also notice itching and a tightening of your skin, like someone is pulling your skin.

Types of scaly skin

There is a chance of the dry skin on your legs indicating some medical condition like atopic dermatitis. If this is the case, your skin becomes red in color, is very itchy and most prevalent on the feet and ankles.

Dermatologists state that the dry skin on your legs may sometimes be a symptom of a medical condition like atopic dermatitis. This condition leads to very itchy red skin most commonly occurring on the feet and ankles. Even eczema of the legs leads to dry and scaly skin patches on the legs. And if the dry skin patches occur around varicose veins, the condition is called varicose eczema.


Applying a good moisturizer twice or thrice a day, particularly after a shower, is more than enough for mild dry leg skin. Its better massaging the lotion into your legs as it boosts your leg circulation which affects your body’s ability at moisturizing the skin.

Your doctor may prescribe a special cream or ointment if your leg skin does not respond to over-the-counter treatments. These special creams encourage skin exfoliation while moisturizing the legs. It also helps if you keep a humidifier in your room if you live in dry climate as it adds moisture to the air.

Take care

It’s however important that you take action if your lower leg skin itching and dryness is so bad that it interferes with your sleep or if you end up having skin scratches which do not heal. This may indicate a more serious problem like poor skin circulation.