Living with psoriasis can be a challenging experience, both physically and emotionally. This chronic autoimmune condition affects millions of people worldwide, causing uncomfortable and sometimes painful symptoms such as red, scaly patches on the skin. While there is no cure for psoriasis, there are effective coping strategies that can individuals living with psoriasis to manage this condition and reduce the frequency and severity of flare-ups. Whether you’ve just been diagnosed or have been living with psoriasis for years, these tips can help you live a more comfortable, fulfilling life.
Tip 1: Moisturize Regularly. Dry skin can aggravate psoriasis. Keep your skin moisturized with a gentle, fragrance-free moisturizer to reduce itching and dryness. Keeping the skin hydrated can also reduce the appearance of psoriasis patches.
Tip 2: Hydrate. Your skin needs moisture not just from the outside in, but from the inside out. Drinking plenty of water and clear fluids helps to keep your skin hydrated and reduce the likelihood of psoriasis flare-ups.
Tip 3: Avoid Psoriasis Triggers. Psoriasis is often triggered by factors such as stress, alcohol, smoking, and certain medications and foods. Where possible, eliminate these from your life and try to identify your unique psoriasis triggers to reduce the frequency and severity of symptoms.
Tip 4: Manage Stress. Stress is a known trigger for psoriasis flare-ups. While total stress avoidance is likely impossible, practicing relaxation techniques such as yoga, deep breathing, and meditation can help you feel less stressed on a daily basis. This may not only minimize your risk of flare-ups, but also improve your overall well-being and quality of life.
Tip 5: Watch Your Diet. Certain foods can also trigger or worsen psoriasis symptoms. These can be unique to the individual, but more common triggers may include sugar, dairy, red meat, and processed foods. Opt for more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins to reduce your risk.
Tip 6: Be Gentle with Your Skin. Itchy, rashy skin can be incredibly irritating, but the last thing you want to do is scratch or pick at your psoriasis plaques. This can make them worse and increase your risk of infection. Avoid harsh cleansers and be gentle when applying creams and lotions.
Tip 7: Get Treatment. There’s no reason to suffer when there are treatments available that can help control psoriasis. Treatment for psoriasis depends on the type, location, and severity of the condition; common treatments include topical medications, phototherapy, photochemotherapy (PUVA), oral medications, and injectable medications. Effective treatment can resolve symptoms for months or even years at a time.
Living with psoriasis can be difficult, but these coping strategies can make things easier and help you take control of your condition. By adopting these tips into your daily life, you can reduce the likelihood and severity of psoriasis flare-ups and keep your skin happy and healthy. If you’re struggling to manage your symptoms, don’t hesitate to reach out to a dermatologist for additional guidance. With the right strategies and support, you can successfully manage your psoriasis and live a fulfilling life.
To schedule an appointment with one of our dermatologists, call Medovate Dermatology at 847.499.5500.