10 Tips to Manage and Fight Psoriasis Flares in Winter
While the root cause of psoriasis stems from one’s immune system, certain factors such as cold weather tend to aggravate the condition. Cold winds that blow during the winter months can worsen your flare-ups. Apart from this, dry skin, lack of sunlight, low humidity, and even stress or illness can aggravate it.
Fortunately, you can combat the ill effects of psoriasis in winter and even prevent the condition from happening in the first place. Although you can’t control the weather, there is so much you can do to keep the flares under control.
Here are a few tips to fight and manage psoriasis effectively.
Soothe out your psoriasis flares by keeping your skin well-moisturised in winters. A soothing lotion made from coal tar and aloe vera gel will reduce itching and heal those patches. Use this lotion after every bath or shower. If you use a moisturiser, make sure it’s free from toxins, especially artificial fragrance.
- Use a Humidifier
To combat psoriasis in winter, invest in a humidifier. This is essential to counteract the effects of dry air and indoor heating. A humidifier will keep indoor air moist and won’t dry out your psoriasis flare-ups.
- Wear Soft Clothing
Too tight clothing or harsh fabrics can make your condition worse. You also need to be mindful of layering during winter as it can peel off your skin. Choose soft fabrics like cotton, even for cold weather. Wear soft gloves and a scarf to keep yourself protected from the cold.
- Opt for a Soothing Bath
Choose a warm, soothing bath instead of a hot shower for instant relaxation. You can count on Epsom or Dead Sea salt and herbal oils to soothe your itching and inflammation. Soak your body in the tub for about 15 minutes, and always apply moisturising cream or lotion after the shower.
Stress can make psoriasis worse, so sit back and relax. Try de-stressing activities like meditation, listening to music, playing with pets, and the like to combat stress. You can also opt for a weekly full-body massage to soothe your senses and beat the winter blues.
- Take Care of Your Skin and Scalp
If you have psoriasis or have a predisposition to the condition, you need to be extra mindful of taking care of your skin and scalp. Keep your skin moisturized, and never pick at those patches. Use topical treatments and soothing skin and bath products.
- Eat a Healthy Diet
Researchers have concluded that relying on a healthy diet and maintaining a healthy weight can reduce the severity of psoriasis. This was seen in a 2013 study carried out on a group of overweight people with psoriasis. So, eat a well-balanced diet with the correct dose of nutrients, including omega-3 fatty acids, to decrease your inflammation.
- Stay Hydrated
If you have psoriasis, you need to drink enough water, especially during winters, to combat skin dryness. Try to drink 7-8 glasses of water or healthy fluids to remain hydrated. Also, count on topical hydrating serums to maintain your skin’s moisture levels.
- Use Products with Coal Tar
Products formulated with coal tar can ease the symptoms of psoriasis. You can use these products in the form of ointments, lotions, soaps, and medicated shampoos. Just make sure to avoid coal tar if you have sun sensitivity, are pregnant or breastfeeding, or use meds that increase UV light sensitivity.
- Seek Medical Help
Consult your doctor to seek treatment options that can lessen the impact of psoriasis symptoms. Depending on the severity of your condition, the doctor will prescribe OTC lotions, topical steroids, or nonsteroidal topicals. They may also recommend phototherapy or certain home remedies to soothe your inflammation.
Prevention Tips for Psoriasis
Rely on these tips to increase your chances of preventing psoriasis in the first place:
- Avoid cold and dry weather if possible.
- Always wear sunscreen, even during winters.
- Avoid medications that can cause flare-ups.
- Limit your alcohol intake.
- Always use moisturising lotions.
- Get some sun in winters but avoid too much sunlight.
- Opt for a routinely physical workout.
- Maintain a healthy weight by eating right.
- Avoid cuts, bumps and scrapes.
- Treat skin infections as soon as possible.
Even though the underlying cause of psoriasis lies in your genetics and immunity, you can curb the symptoms of the disease with the proper diet and lifestyle. It’s best to talk to your doctor to get rid of psoriasis effectively. A good dermatologist will devise a suitable treatment plan for your condition. If your condition worsens in winters, they may also adjust your meds and recommend suitable light therapy. Skin & Hair Academy can help connect you with expert dermatologists near you.