At some point in our lives, we all suffer from a bout of dry skin,…
As anyone who has psoriasis knows, this stubborn medical condition can cause serious discomfort. Essentially, it’s a condition that causes skin cells to build up and form itchy patches on the skin’s surface. Generally speaking, it can flare up or go dormant at any time—as a chronic condition, it doesn’t have a cure, and one of the most frustrating parts about it is how it can rear its head at any time.
For some, summer is one of those times it flares up the worst. This can be especially difficult in the season when we want to wear short sleeves, bathing suits, and dresses but feel embarrassed by the appearance of our skin. You may be wondering why your psoriasis is worse in the summer and what you can do to prevent it.
Advanced Dermatology of North Central Ohio is here to help you discover more about summer psoriasis and provide some psoriasis skincare tips for a relaxing summer season.
Spend Some Time in the Sun—But Do So Smartly
For some people, psoriasis actually improves in the summer because Ultraviolet B & Vitamin D from natural sunlight can be an effective treatment. So, one way to prevent summer psoriasis and flare-ups is to get some safe sun exposure. One of the safest ways to do this is medical-grade light therapy, but a small amount of natural sunlight can be helpful, too.
As dermatologists, we have to caution our patients about this so-called sunlight prescription, though. Start with 5 minutes and gradually work up to 15 minutes of sun, but no more. And always come and talk to us to develop a personalized sun and sunscreen plan to ensure you don’t harm your skin.
Speaking of sun damage, you’ll need to avoid sunburns this summer at all costs. Too much fun in the sun can spell disaster for your skin and trigger psoriasis flare-ups.
Use at least SPF 30 sunscreen if you plan to be outdoors in the sun for any longer than 15 minutes. At Advanced Dermatology of North Central Ohio, our board-certified dermatologists can help you choose a powerful sunscreen that’s perfectly formulated for your sensitive skin.
Protect Your Skin from Bug Bites
If you want to have a great summer free from psoriasis flare-ups, you’ll also need to protect your skin from bug bites. While bug bites can cause anyone’s skin to itch, people with psoriasis have it even worse. Instead of putting bug repellant on your skin, however, try using citronella candles and other area-of-effect repellants to avoid irritating your skin.
If that’s not an option, or isn’t effective enough, make sure to choose a bug spray with low levels of DEET that’s picaridin-based—picaridin is less irritating than the active ingredients other repellants use.
Hydration is a secret weapon for psoriasis sufferers, even in the form of the extra humidity in the air that’s common in summer. If you can stand to, enjoy the extra water in the air—and if it’s too hot for comfort, drink lots of water and make sure to use plenty of your dermatologist-recommended moisturizer within three minutes of showering or swimming.
Speaking of swimming: going for a dip can help remove dead skin cells to smooth and reduce symptoms of psoriasis. While a pool will work fine, chlorinated water can dry out skin. You’ll gain even more relief and therapeutic benefits from swimming in salt water—what better excuse for a beach trip? Just be sure to rinse off and apply that moisturizer after you’re done swimming to avoid dry skin.
…But Try not to Sweat
So, extra moisture is good, but there is one caveat. Too much heat and sweat can irritate your skin and cause significant flare-ups. It’s especially important not to let sweat build up around your face and scalp. If you’re outside and begin to sweat, try to take a break indoors as soon as you can so you can start to cool off—or carry a portable fan, spray bottle, or cooling band to beat the heat on prolonged outdoor activities.
Are You Looking for Treatment Options?
If you have psoriasis, it’s tough to try and manage it on your own. To take the best care of your skin, avoid irritation, and live your best life this summer and all year round, consider consulting with a professional. At Advanced Dermatology of North Central Ohio, we have the knowledge, expertise, and tools to reduce and treat symptoms of psoriasis and help you feel great in the skin you’re in.
Psoriasis Treatment by Board-Certified Dermatologists in North Central Ohio
At Advanced Dermatology of North Central Ohio, we’re committed to helping all our patients enjoy clear, calm, and beautiful skin with a variety of treatments, skincare recommendations, and procedures. Have questions or want to schedule an appointment? Call (419) 664-5138 or contact us online today so that together we can come up with a treatment plan that will work for you!