Psoriasis is a very irritating disease literally and figuratively. Living with it, is very challenging.
Why do you get it? I haven’t found that answer till date. I know that psoriasis is auto immune disease. An autoimmune disease is a condition in which your immune system mistakenly attacks your body. So, one day I woke up with dry itchy patches over my elbow. My scalp was itchy too, but I ignored it for dandruff and continued my routine. Itching was persistent for few days so I decided to visit a skin specialist and was diagnosed with psoriasis. At that time, I didn’t know what it meant. I just thought it was a fancy word for allergy. I started using ointments but within a month my whole body was covered with dry scales. And my life went upside down. A normal person can never imagine how irritating it is.
After 2 months I started looking for other options like homeopathy and took medicine for around 5 yrs. It got reduced up to 95%. Just small marks on hands, that’s it. I learned a lot in this journey. It took me few years to understand the basic things but education is very expensive. I am going to summarise them below.
Accept: First of all, accept this disease. The longer you dwell on resistance the more you will suffer. By acceptance I mean accepting the fact that it’s going to itch for the next few months. It’s going to drive you crazy. This disease is going to be part of your life for some time. Remember Part, not whole life.
It’s easy to talk but how do you do it?
Sit in a quiet place with a pen and paper. Write down all your fears, pain, anger about psoriasis. Take your time. Once everything is written, we are going to tear that paper. That’s it. Let’s not think about it again. If in the future you feel like thinking about it, tell this to yourself – I thought about everything that day. I am not going to waste my time doing it again. Eventually you will train your mind.
If you have done this, you have won half the battle guys! You have ended your suffering, now you just need to address the pain
Stigma: Whenever people find anything unusual, their fear response is activated. That’s why many illnesses have stigma attached to it. Since psoriasis shows in form of lesions, people will comment and ask about it.
Develop your strategy how to deal with it. I had categorised people in three categories:
- Near and dear ones: Tell them about the disease, why it happens and it is going to take a while to go.
- Curious Ones: Tell them it’s a medical condition and that you are taking treatment. That’s it.
- Advice giver: Believe me, they are the worst. They will suggest you very bizarre things. The key here is to hear but not react. Your drama skills should be at work. My reaction would make people think that I am hearing this for the first time and ready to do all it takes. Off course if it would make sense, I would research about it. But mostly it didn’t work.
The purpose of above 2 points is to save energy for the main part “Healing”.
Healing: This is an interesting part. All the methods which you are going to apply are going to have “Butterfly effect”.
The butterfly effect serves as a metaphor for life in a chaotic world. Specifically, it suggests that small events can have very large effects.
- Work on trigger: There are a few conditions/situations in the past which trigger psoriasis.
Most of the time there is a trigger.
E.g. Stress, Relationship problems, Built up anger and so on.
Contact an expert. Share your problem. Talk to a counsellor. They have the tools for a better life.
I was lucky to have 2 people who helped me in this matter.
My Doctor – Dr. R.S. Sonawane who is an expert in psoriasis treatment. He performed dual role that time. He did counselling, listened to all the problems which I was facing and gave medication.
The second person was Shruti Sugwekar. She gave me tools like self-hypnosis to address the stress in my life. She is my mentor, too.
I am really grateful for these two people in my life. If you are still confused what Sharing will do in this matter read my blog Sharing is Caring.
- Meditate: Do you think it is boring? Believe me, disease starts from inside, so it is healed from inside out. Meditation creates a gap between your thinking and reacting. You learn to respond to situation. No stress involved, my friends. You are working for yourself not against yourself.
Remember, ‘Toxic thoughts create toxic chemistry whereas Tonic Thoughts create Tonic Chemistry in your body.’ (Michael Bernard Beckwith, Documentary “Heal”)
- Exercise: What else is going to replace your stress hormones with feel-good hormones?
Yoga works very well as it’s not just exercise but union of body, mind and soul. Make sure you incorporate pranayama as a part of regime.
- Be happy: Do what makes you happy. My psoriasis lesions were drastically reduced during pregnancy. All the happy hormones reduced stress hormones.
There is an amazing quote from my favourite character, Harvey Spectre,
“Have you ever loved someone so much that you will do anything for them? Yeah well make that someone YOURSELF and do whatever is necessary”. So, what are you waiting for?
Try all these things and let me know what works for you. Suggestions are welcome. I kept this blog short, but if you need more information you can write to me.