As the skin is the most exposed organ of the human body, it is vulnerable to be damaged by extreme climatic and environmental factors. These factors include either bacteria, fungal pathogens, through direct or indirect contact, parasites on the body, exposure to radiation and many a time chemical and hazardous materials. With the help of coconut oil, you can get rid of all the skin problems easily.
- Causes of Skin Ailments
- Coconut Oil for Skin
- Usage of Coconut Oil
- Home Remedies for Skin Problems
Causes of skin ailments
Various underlying causes of skin ailments are:
- Skin and Soft Tissue Infections (SSTI) and Acute Bacterial Skin and Skin Structure Infections (ABSSSI) caused by Streptococcus, staphylococcus or methylene resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections.
- Viral infections caused by herpes simplex virus (HSV), varicella zoster, arboviruses, human papilloma virus (HPV), parvovirus, Epstein – Barr virus, morbilli virus, rubella virus and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
- Fungai leads to different skin ailments like tinea cruris (jock itch), tinea pedis (athlete’s foot), candidiasis (yeast infection), and tinea corporis (ringworm) in different parts of the body.
- Parasites like Pediculus humanus corporis (body lice), Pediculus humanus capitis (head lice), Phthirus pubis (pubic lice/crabs), Tunga penetrans and Sarcoptes scabiei live on the human body causing skin infections.
- Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation (sunburn) or toxic chemicals.
Coconut Oil for skin
Coconut oil, a viscous, transparent fluid is the byproduct of dried coconuts. One tablespoon of Coconut Oil contains 13.6 grams of fat, 0 grams of proteins. 0 grams of carbohydrates and 117 calories. The fats present in this oil are fatty acids that are beneficial to the human body known as medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) or Lauric acid.(1). It also has a high vitamin and mineral content, and zero cholesterol.
The MCTs present in the coconut oil poses several benefits as anti-oxidizing, anti-inflammatory, antiviral and antibacterial properties. These fatty acids are extremely useful in fighting gram-negative bacteria and viruses.
How to use Coconut Oil for skin problems?
Coconut Oil can be used to treat skin conditions on any part of the body, even the scalp. Here are some ways of using Coconut Oil on the skin:
1. Against Stretch marks:
Coconut Oil is one of the most effective cures against stretch marks. The moisturizing capability and rapid absorption into the skin make it an ideal and preferable measure while dealing with stretch marks. If a woman applies Coconut Oil twice or thrice daily on a regular basis during pregnancy, it significantly reduces the chances of stretch mark manifestation.
2. As an insect repellent:
Most insect repellent topical drugs are packed with unhealthy chemicals. Coconut Oil is a natural and completely safe alternative against chemical creams. However, mixing it with aromatic herbal oils gives it a pleasant fragrance and this mixture protects against mosquitoes for 5 to 6 hours.
3. Alternative chapstick:
Coconut Oil is widely used as a lip balm or Chap Stick to treat dried or peeling lips. Its moisturizing properties hydrate the skin of the lips and make it soft and smooth.
In dry and cold weather when the skin on hands, arms, feet, and face loses all moisture and begins to crack or peel, using Coconut Oil is very beneficial. Dried skin is accompanied by irritation and inflammation, both of which are quickly treated by this oil. Even on a daily basis irrespective of weather conditions, Coconut Oil is an effective moisturizer as it makes the skin smooth and soft and protects it from pollution and dirt.
5. For massages:
Most store – bought massage oils usually contain some quantity of coconut oil. As it is easy to apply, gets absorbed quickly, skin – friendly and slippery, this oil is widely used during massages.
6. Psoriasis treatment:
The autoimmune disease Psoriasis can cause irritation and pain near the nails along with diminishing their appearance. The build-up of dead skin cells and the rough, scaly patches of psoriasis can be treated by soaking in a hot bath consisting of a few tablespoons of coconut oil.
7. Relieve eczema:
This oil is also a natural treatment measure for eczema. Applying the oil twice a day can help reduce dryness, itching, redness, and fight and reduce the bacterial infection of staphylococcus.
8. Treats sunburns:
The oil can be used as a treatment as well as a preventive measure against sunburns. In the prior case, applying the oil to the affected area reduces the inflammation, soothes and moisturizes the skin and forms a protective layer against dirt and pathogens. To prevent sunburns, the oil can be applied on arms, face, and legs but only if the exposure to sunlight (UV radiation) will be short as it acts as a sunscreen, though its sun protection factor is very low.
Other methods to use Coconut Oil for skin problems
Coconut Oil can be used to treat numerous skin ailments in many different ways, as it has excellent moisturizing properties, high content of vitamins and high concentration of fatty acids that are beneficial to the skin. As coconut oil alone cannot treat certain skin conditions, mixing this with vegetable oil or an essential oil yields desired results.
The different mixtures of oils that can be utilized with Coconut Oil are:
1. Pure Coconut Oil (best coconut oil for skin)
Commonly referred to as Virgin or Pure Coconut oil, it is 100% free of any preservatives or diluting oils. It is commonly applied to the lips, face and other body parts as a moisturizer or even as a temporary sunscreen lotion.
2. Bath Oils and Coconut oil:
Soaking in a cold bath that contains a ¼ cup of Coconut Oil mixed with 5-6 drops of peppermint oil is highly effective against sunburns and provides quick relief from pain and inflammation.
3. Lavender Oils with Coconut oil:
Diluting two tablespoons of Coconut Oil with aloe vera and a few drops of lavender oil can help cleanse the skin thoroughly. The antiseptic properties of the lavender oil prohibit the entry of pathogens through cracks, blisters, cuts on the skin or peeled parts of the skin.
4. Diluted with Tea Tree Oils:
Antibacterial and antifungal tea tree oils combined with Coconut Oil form an incredible and useful mixture. Add 2 tablespoons of coconut oil to 3 to 5 drops of Tea tree oil. This mixture can be used to treat sunburns, blisters, peeling of unwanted skin and other minor skin irritation problems.
5. Honey and Coconut oil:
Mixing Coconut Oil with honey can be very beneficial for the health of one’s skin as the moisturizing and anti-inflammatory capabilities of these two substances are beneficial.
6. Castor Oils mixed with Coconut oil:
Castor oil mixes with Coconut Oil very quickly and can be used to treat skin ailments in which the skin is susceptible to pathogens, dirt, and other infections.
- Those allergic to nuts must consult a general physician or allergist before utilizing Coconut Oil to treat skin conditions as it can cause severe reactions like anaphylaxis.
- Only organic Coconut Oil or Virgin Coconut Oil must be used while treating skin conditions.
- Ensure the validity and legitimacy of the oil you have purchased. It should have federal approval from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the FDA(2)
Home remedies for Skin Problems
In addition to using coconut oil for skin problems, you can also try the below mentioned home remedies: –
- Add a tsp of turmeric powder, three tbsp of gram flour, and half a cup of milk in a bowl. Mix till you get a consistent paste. Now, apply it all over the affected area and leave on for half an hour. After that, wash-off with fresh water. Repeat this once daily. This also prohibits the growth of bacteria along with leaving a fresh feel.
- Take one tbsp of aloe vera gel, half tsp of turmeric, one tsp of honey and one tbsp of milk in a bowl. Mix to form a smooth paste. Now apply evenly over the affected area, let it stay for half an hour. Then wash-off with cold water and pat dry. Repeat this once daily.
- Take two tbsp of lemon juice and one tbsp of sugar in a bowl and mix till you get a scrub like texture. Now apply it on the face with circular motions and leave on for ten minutes. After that, wash-off with fresh water and pat dry. Repeat this thrice a week.
- Aloe Vera is one of the best options to help heal your skin problems, especially the ones related to skin burning and dryness. Cut the aloe Vera leaf and apply the liquid on your skin, it helps cools down your skin and give some relief.
- Baking soda also helps in making the skin rashes dry. This quickens the healing process of skin rashes.
- Owing to its cooling effect on the skin, Neem is another home remedy which is easily available, yet proves to be very effective.
This is why using Coconut Oil for skin is a good option. It is important to remember that Coconut Oil is a home remedy and if any skin condition shows no improvement or deteriorates even after being treated with the oil must be immediately reported to a general physician or dermatologist for further evaluation and diagnosis.