With long Summer days turning into cooler Autumn months, managing psoriasis can get tricky. The combination of gusty winds, cold temperatures, dry air, and less sunlight, can contribute to more frequent flare ups. Here are the top 10 Psurvival tips we’ve put together to help you transition gracefully into the chillier seasons.
1. Be Mindful Of How Psoriasis Can Be Affected with Seasonal Change
In Spring and Summer days, you may experience less flare ups due to frequent sun exposure (UV rays), helping your body to produce a sufficient amount of vitamin D to maintain skin health. While this may make you feel like your psoriasis has gotten better, the transition to Fall and Winter may increase your flareup frequency because of less sun exposure, drier air, and increased stress towards the end of the year.
2. Do Not Hibernate
Colder temperatures and rough weather can tempt you to stay indoors (worst of all - in bed all day). If the weather allows, go for a short walk outside or a stroll in an indoor mall. Your mental and physical health can benefit from keeping active and changing up sceneries. If you are feeling extra tired, a loss of appetite, or in a funk, you may be prone to Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Plan a quick getaway or vacation to warmer locations. If you must stay at home, increase your activity by creating a workout routine to keep movement going, discover a new hobby to keep yourself occupied, or set up game nights with your family.
3. Understand the Importance of Undergarments
Certain fabrics can make your skin feel itchy and cause irritation. Generally, natural fabrics like cotton or silk are kinder to your skin than synthetics like nylon, rayon, and polyester. If you must wear that wool sweater your grandma gave you, make sure to wear a base layer underneath. Tight-fitting clothing combined with sweat can create unwanted friction between your skin and fabric. If you are prone to flare ups in sensitive areas, choose a base layer that is breathable and can help wick excess moisture to prevent further irritations.
4. Optimize your Psoriasis Pstyle
Don’t let psoriasis cramp your style. You can still build great outfits with your favorite clothing and layering with breathable clothing to keep warm. Choose fun patterns and bold colors that make you feel good and increase your confidence. Accessories are a quick and simple way to make any outfit pop. Carry cute tote bags so you can store your handy scarf or hat, all your favorite skincare goods, water bottle, and all your needs for Psoriasis Psurvival on-the-go. Whatever your style is, have fun with the many ways you can show your personality and stay comfortable this season.
5. Moisturize and Hydrate More Often
Exposure to crisp air and lashing winds can create drier skin and irritations. Moisturizing is the most important during this time of the year. Keep a large bottle of lotion in the bathroom to apply after bath time. While your skin is still warm and the air is humid in the bathroom, your skin will absorb moisture better. Use heavier creams and moisturizing gloves to maximize your skin hydration session. It is also equally important to hydrate from within. In colder temperatures, we may not feel dehydrated because our bodies are not as hot and sweat evaporates quicker in dry air. However, we also lose more respiratory fluid in colder temperatures (steam coming from our breath in the cold). Drink warm beverages to keep warm and prevent sore throats. There is a known strep-psoriasis connection, where sore throats can link to psoriasis reactions. So take care of your body from the inside out to keep control of your psoriasis.
6. Bathe in Warm Water (Not Hot Water)
When temperatures drop, you may be tempted to take a long, hot shower or bath to stay warm and feel comfy. Not only does this dry your skin out more, it can also damage your nails. Nails tend to absorb water and long baths can make them dry and brittle. For those whose psoriasis affects the nails, you want to maintain the oils and natural moisture in your nail beds. If you plan to take a long bath, use warm water and add some nutrients with bath bombs or soaking salts, to reap in benefits for your skin, nails, and joint pain.
7. Humidify Your Air
Dry air is an inevitable part of winter, and unfortunately, blasting your heater at home can make the issue more apparent. Cold air can not hold as much moisture. Even though you can change the temperature at home, you are not changing the moisture content in the air. Less moisture in the air can not only cause dry skin, but can create respiratory discomfort, like coughing, sneezing, and itchy noses. Keep a humidifier running with your heater to create a healthy environment for you and your family.
8. Pay Attention to Your Skin and Any Body Aches
Psoriasis plaques can start with a small patch or dot and progressively get larger if not taken care of. With clothes covering your body most of the time, you may not notice a single small spot until it gets much larger. Similarly, do not ignore any slight ache you may be feeling. We are tough human beings and can persevere through a lot of pain but, even if an ache is manageable, don’t brush it off. If you are feeling slight aches in your feet or hands, be careful of how you use them. At the end of your day, do a full body check and get familiar with your skin and joints to understand what looks or feels right or wrong so you can address it properly before it gets worse.
9. Psoriasis Psupport
It can feel lonely, if you don’t know anyone else suffering with psoriasis. Join a group online or locally to get the Psoriasis Psupport you are looking for. Remember that you are not alone in this. There are many people sharing their experience, tips and tricks, and advice with managing psoriasis online and in forums. We also have our Community Group where you can ask questions and learn more about how our products can work for you.
10.Take Guilt-Free Self Care
It seems like living with psoriasis can affect every decision of your life. With everything else going on in your life, the stress can add up. Even if you have a lot of people depending on you, remember that you need to take care of yourself so you can take care of others. Treat yourself to a mani/pedi, massage, or whatever makes you feel good. When you feel good about yourself the confidence will energize you and keep you going. We know you have a lot to do, but it is important to take time to destress and not let the burnout of living with this disease take control of you.
Comment below to let us know what Psurvival tips you would like to share.
Thank you for the good advice! This disease can be physically painful and unsetting. Your particular tips on how to boost your mood and raise your perspective is most welcome.