Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition that impacts around 1.3 million Brits* - It can be painful and can not only impact a person’s physical health but also their mental wellbeing. Whilst there isn't currently a cure, knowing what might be triggering your skin flare-up is a huge step in helping manage the condition and reducing stress on your body.
To help those who suffer from chronic skin issues, we have enlisted the help of Nadav Shraibom, skincare expert and Scientific Founder of MEDOVIE to provide his expertise on the condition. After suffering with psoriasis himself, he has spent the last decade researching and analysing how psoriasis affects the body, both physically and mentally, and has now developed products that have been proven to be safe and highly effective on psoriasis-prone skin. Here, he shares his insight into the unknown factors that could be causing your psoriasis to flare-up.
What is psoriasis?
“Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition that causes red, itchy, painful, flaky skin. It can appear anywhere on the body, but is most commonly found on elbows, knees, scalp and lower back. Currently, there is no cure for it, but there are treatments available to help people manage the condition and reduce any flare-ups.”
What can trigger a psoriasis flare-up?
“There are many different factors that can cause symptoms to intensify, and the trick is to understand your own body and figure out what is causing the irritation. Some of the key things I ask patients to look out for when they’re trying to discern why their condition has worsened are:
1. Your central heating - Shivering at your desk whilst working from home? Instinctively you’ll turn up the central heating to help warm you up. Whilst this might leave you feeling toasty, it is also a huge factor in why your skin may be feeling itchy or looking more red. Central heating sucks the humidity out of your house, which also means it causes your skin to dry out, which triggers a response and can cause your psoriasis to flare-up.
By turning your central heating down a few degrees, you can stop your skin from drying out as much. Also, ensuring your moisturising your skin first thing in the morning and before you go to bed to rehydrate your skin will help to soothe any irritation. Another handy trick is to place a bowl of water on top of your radiator and this will help reintroduce moisture into the air, and therefore stop your skin from drying out.
2. Lockdown stress - It’s not just physical triggers you need to be keeping an eye out for. Another national lockdown and uncertainty about what the future might hold can cause a lot of stress - either consciously or subconsciously. Whilst stress is a mental issue, it can have physical manifestations, and those with psoriasis are more prone to this issue as stress can impact the immune system, a catalyst for outbreaks.
If your psoriasis is triggered by stress and anxiety, this then can turn into a painful and vicious cycle, so it’s best to try and maintain your skin health to help alleviate some of the symptoms.
3. The weather - Getting outside for exercise is one of the few things we are still able to do during the lockdown period. However, the cold weather and wind can cause irritation to exposed skin.
Before stepping outside, wrap up warm and cover any areas that are prone to having psoriasis. Protect your skin as well by applying moisturiser or suncream (even on a cloudy day!) and re-moisturise once you get home any areas that were open to the elements. Choose a lotion that uses natural ingredients that have been proven to soothe and hydrate your skin.
4. Hot showers and baths - Whether you have a hot shower or bath in the morning to wake you up, or in the evening to help you relax before you go to bed, the temperature of the water can have an impact on your skin as it can cause your skin to dry out.
As soon as you get out the shower, pat your skin dry (do not rub as this can cause even more irritation) and apply a hydrating, chemical-free moisturiser, which will soothe your skin and lock in moisture and help alleviate any flare-ups.
5. Your moisturiser - The type of moisturiser you are using might actually be doing more harm than good.
Instinctively, you might want to reach for the moisturiser that smells gorgeous, but these products often use chemicals to create the scent. This can cause your skin to dry out even more and cause extra irritation. Check that all products you are using on your skin are made with natural ingredients and don’t use harsh chemicals and have been clinically proven to be safe and effective or psoriasis-prone skin.”
How can you treat psoriasis?
“There are different ways for treating psoriasis, from creams and ointments to light therapy. I would always recommend speaking to an expert to determine which route is the best way to treat your skin condition as everyone is different and therefore you need to take a personalised approach depending on what triggers the skin condition in your case.
It is also worth looking into products that help treat the skin from within, and not just from the surface. As skin cells are created from the deepest layer, treating the skin from the inside will help the new cells that are developing and help reduce the condition.
All of MEDOVIE's products are made from natural ingredients clinically studied to normalise skin cell production, clear flakes, and nourish the scalp to leave a refreshed feeling after use. The 3HX™ capsules then work in tandem to calm provoked skin cell production and balance your immune response for long-lasting skin health.”
Are there ingredients in products I should avoid / make sure they have?
“I would always recommend looking for products that are made from natural ingredients, such as the ones that are found in MEDOVIE, rather than choosing something harsher, such as a steroid cream, which can sometimes cause more irritation rather than providing a solution. Natural skincare products are made from plants that are grown free from pesticides and harmful substances. When tended properly, these plants provide potent compounds effective in treating chronic skin problems.
Ensuring that products also have the backing of independent clinical research as well will also show you that the solution is effective and will have long-lasting results.”
To help those who suffer from psoriasis, MEDOVIE is giving away samples for the next 30 days of either the 3HX Scalp Solution (3HX Scalp Shampoo and 3HX Scalp Lotion) or the 3HX Body Solution (3HX Derma Cream). To enter, visit https://medovie.com/plans/female-first-giveaway/, where you can also find the Terms and Conditions.