Coping with psoriasis and its symptoms can be difficult for most patients. What may work for one patient may have no effect on another. Here are some useful tips to try in your pursuit to find what works for you.
1. Finding a doctor you can trust
Sharing your concerns can be daunting in itself, without having a doctor brush it off as a natural part of the disease. It is important that you feel comfortable sharing your feelings and worries with your treating physician so you can both work collectively to address them. In order for your doctor to prescribe the right form of treatment for you, it is important that they take into account your preferences and lifestyle. So find a doctor you feel comfortable sharing your opinions with.
2. Practice healthy lifestyle habits
Your dermatologist has probably told you to avoid alcohol, smoking, and eating your favourite sugary treats to prevent flare ups. However, making the right lifestyle choices when you have psoriasis can feel like a complete upheaval of your life. It is not easy for anyone to make a complete 180° change immediately. Start slow.
When trying to implement a healthy change, start with these few things in mind:
- What is the goal you would like to achieve for your health?
- Choose a simple action that will get you towards that goal that you can do on a daily basis.
- Stay consistent.
3. Changing your medication when needed
Psoriasis is a chronic lifelong disease. Due to its nature, it is quite normal for medications that have previously worked to control flare ups, cease to be as effective as they once were. If you are finding that your symptoms have worsened despite using your regular medications, discuss this with your doctor. You might require a different treatment approach. Work together with your doctor to find what best suits you. Do not give up hope on finding your best treatment.
4. Set realistic goals
It is important to have an honest discussion with your doctor about what is a realistic end goal that can be achieved with your current treatment. If your priority is just managing minor symptoms such as itchiness and flaking every day, topical medications may be the route for you. However, if achieving clear skin is your goal, speak to your doctor on some of the newer treatments available, such as biologics.