Do you live with psoriasis? We know that managing your psoriasis is an everyday struggle. Not only is it painful and itchy but it’s also messy and extremely annoying with the constant flaking of the skin. It’s nothing to be embarrassed about though. The fact is that psoriasis impacts as much as 2.2% of the world’s population and you can learn to overcome it. That's why we’ve compiled the top 20 tips for psoriasis relief!
TIP #1 - Consult Your doctor First: We know that a trip to your GP isn’t always convenient but it’s important to check with your doctor first for a proper diagnosis so you can rule out other complications such as arthritis.
TIP #2 - Moisturize! Moisturizing won’t make your psoriasis go away but it vastly helps with most of the psoriasis symptoms. We recommend to moisturize after you bathe so you can trap in the moisture. It’s also best to avoid moisturizers that are too thin and won’t deeply penetrate the skin. With proper moisture, the annoyance of dry and itchy skin will go away.
TIP #3 - Catch Some Rays: UV light slows the growth of skin cells. Since psoriasis is caused by excessive skin cell production, it makes sense that sunlight can help your psoriasis. Don’t go overboard though since getting too much direct sun can lead to far worse problems such as skin cancer. Wear sunscreen and try to limit your direct sun exposure to just a few times per week.
TIP #4 - Define and Avoid Triggers in Your Diet: Diet alone didn’t cause you to get psoriasis but certain foods and drinks can certainly make it worse. For example, some people with psoriasis are sensitive to alcohol or gluten. Take notes to define the foods that cause your psoriasis to flare up and then learn to systematically avoid these foods.
TIP #5 - Use Gentle Skincare, Cosmetics, and Bath Products: Similar to #4, there may be certain products that are causing your psoriasis to flare-up. It’s best to avoid harsh products with added fragrances and detergents that are too strong. Try experimenting with all-natural products with safe ingredients instead.
TIP #6 - Resist the Itch: Sometimes the urge to itch is unbearable. But excessive scratching can certainly make your psoriasis worse. It can even lead to open wounds which have the potential for infection. Try to clip your fingernails short and use creams that reduce itchiness. If you get the urge to scratch, try to distract yourself instead by watching YouTube or thinking about something that calms you down.
TIP #7 - Drink Water: Dehydration can often lead to dry skin. Water is also very good for you, so why not pour yourself another glass? Although moisturizer can help to soothe your skin, the fact is that the human body is made mostly of water. Therefore, it’s critical to keep yourself well-hydrated and you’ll be surprised by how much better you feel.
TIP #8 - Chill the Itch: Have a nasty flare-up? Try using ice packs to soothe the pain and itch. It can play a trick on your mind and body to counterbalance the hot and painful itch. If the cooling sensation is helpful to you, consider bringing a few cold packs with you when you go out of the house so you can quickly find relief whenever you need it most.
TIP #9 - Relax: Stress is not a cause of psoriasis but can make your flare-ups worse. Also, who wants to be stressed all the time? (As if living with psoriasis wasn’t stressful enough...). Remind yourself that you will be better off in the long run if you clear your mind of school, work, and any other troubles you may have. Sit back and relax with your favorite TV show or movie and take some time for yourself!
TIP #10 - Use Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Try taking Omega-3 supplements to cut down on the inflammation or eat a diet that is abundant in Omega-3s such as fish and walnuts. Omega-3s can help to balance cholesterol levels as well.
TIP #11 - Don’t Forget to Exercise: When you have psoriasis, you may not feel like getting up and exercising but it can really help. Even 10-15 minutes a day is enough to cut down on stress and provide you with a wealth of other healthy benefits, in addition to improving your psoriasis symptoms.
TIP #12 - Try Salicylic Acid: It’s available over-the-counter and comes in a variety of treatment products. Salicylic acid helps to promote cell turnover which is the root case of psoriasis. It’s one of the most established skincare treatments for psoriasis, so why not give it a try?
TIP #13 - Avoid Smoking and Drinking: It wouldn’t be completely fair to say that people with psoriasis aren’t allowed to enjoy life’s vices. But it is also understood that smoking and drinking can certainly make psoriasis worse. Smoking and drinking have also been linked to a greater chance of getting psoriasis so it’s best to limit these things whenever possible.
TIP #14 - Develop a Positive Body Image: It’s easy to feel defeated about your psoriasis and the appearance that it has on your skin. Understand that many healthy and beautiful people also suffer from psoriasis and that psoriasis isn’t what defines you. Learn to appreciate your body and appearance, both with and without psoriasis. Plus, agonizing over your appearance is only going to stress you out more which can make your psoriasis worse. Embrace who you are and the body you are given.
TIP #15 - Try a Probiotic: probiotics are friendly bacteria that are necessary to balance the other types of bacteria in your body. Probiotics can be found in foods such as yogurt and fermented foods like Kimchi. You can also take probiotic supplements to ensure you are getting enough.
TIP #16 - Relax in an Epsom Salt Bath: Take a well-deserved break in a bath with colloidal oatmeal or Epsom salt which can provide soothing relief, turnover dead skin cells, and reduce painful itching symptoms. Remember to use moisturizer after you take a bath!
TIP #17 - Wrap Your Skin: Using medical wraps can be an effective way to get the most out of your moisturizer or other topical treatment. This ensures that the treatment will stay on your skin for a longer period of time. No need to go overboard here: typically, a 1-hour wrap is enough time to get a substantial benefit.
TIP #18 - Wear Cotton or Other Gentle Clothing: You might love that wool sweater you got for the holidays, but try to wear gentle clothing that’s made of material like silk or cotton. Also, you may want to avoid wearing tight clothes which can irritate your skin and cause you to feel even itchier.
TIP #19 - Educate Friends and Family: The reality is that most people don’t understand what psoriasis is which can lead to unnecessary stigma. Some people even think that psoriasis is contagious. If you educate your friends and family (without being preachy) it will make both them and yourself feel better.
TIP #20 - Embrace Your Psoriasis: It sounds weird to think of psoriasis as a sense of pride, but hear us out. Those suffering from psoriasis need to work extra hard in order to live the same lives as normal people without it. The truth is that many people have hidden diseases that they are ashamed of admitting but still find clever ways to overcome this. Embrace your psoriasis. Read forums, chat groups, or Reddit to talk with other people with psoriasis. Exchange tips and advice. This is the most important step in getting better.
This gave me hope again
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you.