Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease which manifests as red, flaky patches on the skin. Although seen to affect the skin, this illness actually begins in the immune system, in the T cells, to be specific. The T cells are responsible for protecting us from infection and disease. Sometimes these T cells become active erroneously and set off other immune responses in the body, leading to symptoms of psoriasis making an appearance on the skin. Although there isn’t a straight forward cure for psoriasis, there are many things that you can do to manage this illness.
Let’s take a look at 10 ways to manage mild symptoms of psoriasis.
1. Moisturizing The Skin
Dry skin makes the irritation and itchiness worse. It’s a good idea to keep the skin moist at all times, when dealing with psoriasis. A good way of doing that would be to apply a thick lotion and seal the moisture with a coat of petroleum jelly or olive oil. Although during hot summer months, this may not work well and the thick creams mixed with sweat will make the itching worse. Also, it’s a good idea to seal in some water right after your bath by not rubbing your body with a towel, but just patting your skin with it followed by an application of a thick cream.
2. Preventing Dry Skin
Invest in a humidifier to keep your home and office moist. It will prevent your skin from drying. This should be supplemented with moisturizers that are meant for sensitive skin that will help keep the skin moist and supple.
3. Using Dietary Supplements
Dietary supplements like fish oil, Vitamin D, aloe vera, Oregon grape or evening primrose oil are known to ease mild symptoms of this illness.
4. Having A Warm Bath
While hot water may not be a great idea, a lukewarm bath with Epsom salt, milk or olive oil can help soothe itchy skin. It’s important to moisturize immediately after the bath. Also, it’s a good idea to limit showers and baths as they can strip the skin of natural oils. Bathing every other day or every third day should suffice, especially during the winter months.
Turmeric is seen to reduce psoriasis flare-ups. It can be taken as a supplement or sprinkled over your food. The dosage limit approved by FDA per day is 1.5 to 3 grams.
6. Avoiding Cigarettes
Smoking will aggravate your symptoms of psoriasis and make them more severe. It’s a good idea to try and quit the habit altogether.
7. Drinking In Moderation
Psoriasis is more commonly seen in people who are heavy drinkers and it’s a good idea to limit your alcohol consumption if you do not want to aggravate symptoms. It is advised to limit alcohol intake in women to one drink a day and to two drinks a day for men.
8. Making Dietary Changes
Some foods can trigger a flare-up. Avoiding red meat and fatty snacks can help keep them at bay. Also seeds, nuts and omega-3 fatty acids have the ability to reduce inflammation and reduce the symptoms of psoriasis.
9. Cutting Down On Stress
Stress worsens psoriasis and any chronic illness like psoriasis in itself can cause stress. This becomes a vicious cycle that feeds off itself. It’s a good idea to reduce stress by taking up stress-reducing practices like yoga or meditation.
10. Staying Away From Fragrances
Soaps and perfumes may smell great, but they contain dyes and other chemicals that can irritate your skin and aggravate your symptoms. It’s always a good idea to look for products meant for sensitive skin.