Today’s post was written by Micheala, a freelance health writer focusing on the treatment of skin conditions and diseases and how to avoid potential flare ups of psoriasis and eczema.
How to Avoid Psoriasis Flare-Ups
What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a non-contagious and fairly common skin disorder. Normal skin cells take about four weeks to mature and shed, but psoriasis speeds up the process taking only three days, causing the pile up of cells forming lesions.
The main reason for this is due to the malfunction of the immune system. On this basis, psoriasis is known as an autoimmune disorder, primarily affecting the skin.
The symptoms and the severity can vary from person to person, so it is appropriate to acquire the proper diagnosis from a medical professional. Your skin should be handled with the utmost care and topical skin products should only be used after a consultation with a recommended dermatologist.
Lifestyle changes to avoid flare-ups:
Psoriasis is a non-curable chronic condition, but there are life-style changes that have been proven to help control the symptoms and provide better comfort, such as:
- Exercise is vital. If you need another reason to get yourself up, research is showing that there is a strong benefit in delaying and controlling psoriasis for those who exercise and maintain a healthy weight.
- Keep your skin moisturized, as dry skin aggravates psoriasis.
- Bath in lukewarm water, pat your skin dry, moisturize and wear loose cotton clothing.
- Avoid cold and dry temperatures, invest in a humidifier. As an extreme suggestion you could even move to a more humid, warm climate for extra relief.
- A little sunlight is good, ultraviolet rays help to slow the production of skin cells.
- Reduce stress, it is often the cause of the first flare-up.
- Stop smoking, it worsens symptoms and increases your chances of developing psoriasis.
- Some drugs taken for psychiatric disorders and heart conditions are also known to create sudden flare-ups.
Suitable foods, which can help:
A psoriasis friendly diet is essentially a healthy diet that anyone should follow for overall good health and well-being. A healthy diet will promote a healthy immune system and increase energy, both of which are necessary to control psoriasis. There are some foods that are specifically helpful and some that are better to avoid.
- Drink plenty of water, six to eight glasses a day is recommended.
- Eat healthy fat that is found is fish such as tuna, halibut, salmon, sardines, nuts, seeds, avocados, olive oil and canola oil.
- Eat protein from lean sources such as fish, egg whites and legumes such as kidney, pinto and chickpeas. These sources can also be found in low-fat dairy products.
- Eat fresh fruits and vegetables.
Foods to Avoid
- Foods with high sugar contents, such as soda, pancake syrup and any food with ‘added’ sugar.
- Foods, high in saturated fat, such as red meat, processed meats, high fat dairy and deep-fried foods.
- Reduce your intake of alcohol, in some cases you may need to avoid it completely, as it can be a dangerous combination with some medications used to treat psoriasis.
- If you feel you are overweight, take extra care with your diet, excess weight increases the severity of psoriasis symptoms.
It is very often exasperating, extremely uncomfortable and embarrassing when you have psoriasis. The very nature of the condition is frustrating, as it can seem like it is going away and then suddenly it flares up again and you feel like you are back where you started. Making some changes to your diet and lifestyle will help to reduce the severity and the frequency of the flare-ups.