Children tend to be curious about everything; especially if they are learning about it for the first time. For a parent who is living with psoriasis, there would come a time in your life where you will have to speak to them about this autoimmune condition.
The conversation that you will have with your children may be hard for them to understand at a young age. However, here are some tips that you can consider:
Keep It Simple
For starters, when speaking to your child about psoriasis, you do not have to explain to them what an autoimmune disease is. It would be harder for them to understand the complicated terms and the true nature of the disease.
Explaining your condition in a child-friendly manner would allow them to have a better grasp on what the condition is. Some examples would be to compare the itchiness to that of bug bites and explaining to your child that your skin grows in a faster rate than theirs1.
Be Open and Honest
When explaining your psoriasis condition to your child, try to be as open and honest about the condition with them. Try to avoid brushing the condition off as a rash or an allergic reaction. Sharing the facts about psoriasis would help your child understand your condition and build trust with them.
Let Them Ask Questions
When explaining psoriasis to your child, be prepared to receive questions from them. As they are hearing about this disease for the first time, it may be totally foreign to them and they would most likely be confused about it. Answering their questions concisely would help them understand the condition better and remove any immediate uncertainty.
Differentiate Between the Myths and the Facts
As your child grows older, they may come across various myths about psoriasis that they may not have known about. It is important that you, as a parent, help your child bust those myths and understand the facts about it.
Let them know that it is not contagious2, and it has nothing to do with poor hygiene3. Once they are able to differentiate the myths from the facts, they would be able to help inform their social circles as well.
As a parent living with psoriasis, you may also have to prepare your child. They might have a chance to develop the condition as they get older4. More importantly, you should show your child that you’re approaching this condition positively, as it would be a give them a lesson of courage and self-love.
1How I Talk to My Kids About My Psoriasis. Healthline. (2020). Retrieved 21 October 2020, from https://www.healthline.com/health/psoriasis/moderate-to-severe/talk-about-my-psoriasis-kids.
2Is Psoriasis Contagious? Causes, Triggers, and Diagnosis. Healthline. (2020). Retrieved 21 October 2020, from https://www.healthline.com/health/psoriasis/is-psoriasis-contagious.
37 Psoriasis Myths Debunked. Healthline. (2020). Retrieved 21 October 2020, from https://www.healthline.com/health/7-psoriasis-myths-you-shouldnt-believe.
4Is Psoriasis Hereditary?. Healthline. (2020). Retrieved 21 October 2020, from https://www.healthline.com/health/psoriasis/is-psoriasis-hereditary.