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4 Tips to Help Your Senior Loved One Avoid Psoriasis Flare-ups
Posted: 7/7/2016 3:11 PM by
Psoriasis can be embarrassing, especially during a flare-up when your loved one's skin can become red and scaly. It's also painful, and a diagnosis of psoriasis can be overwhelming both to you and to your loved one. The best option for you as a family caregiver is to help your loved one to do everything that she can in order to avoid a flare-up. Once her psoriasis is under better control, she'll feel much better.
Educate Yourself about Psoriasis
Learn as much as you can about psoriasis. This means reading whatever you can find as well as talking to your loved one's doctors and care providers. The more that you know about psoriasis, the better you are going to be able to help your loved one avoid triggers and keep the flare-ups at bay. You will also be better able to inform other people, who help your loved one, about psoriasis and about what they can do.
Wash Skin Gently
Always wash your loved one's skin gently. A fragrance-free soap designed for sensitive skin can help, as can lukewarm water rather than hot water. You want to use products that help to add moisture to the skin rather than drying it out. Avoid scrubbing at the skin since that can cause flare-ups and injury. Try to keep showers and baths short so that they're less likely to dry out your loved one's skin. Also, when bath time is over, pat skin dry instead of rubbing it.
Scratching can cause problems for people with psoriasis and a good way to keep from scratching is to keep the skin moisturized. After a bath or shower, make sure that you apply moisturizer thoroughly. You may also need to reapply moisturizers throughout the day if your loved one's skin starts to feel dry, tight, or itchy. Check with her doctor to find out if there is a particular moisturizer that can help her.
Protect the Skin
Above all, help your loved one to keep her skin protected. Injuries can become flare-ups later, which is something called the Koebner phenomenon. Insect bites, scratches, and scrapes are all susceptible to becoming a flare-up later. When she's going outside, opt for long sleeves and pants, especially when insects are likely to be a problem. Keeping her skin as safe as possible can help it to remain free of lesions.
Ask your loved one's doctor what else you can do for her to help keep her psoriasis under control.
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