Breaking The Stigma: Psoriasis Is Not Contagious
Last updated: September 2021
Psoriasis warriors, today, I am here to make a change. Let us all make a change. For ourselves, let's speak up and stand up. We can be the change to bring the change.
Let's admit it, we're all tired. I've been fighting to be treated as an equal for 56 years now. There is so much stigma around this condition and it's too important. Help us in the journey. There are many of us that are psoriasis warriors, not just survivors.
It starts with a negative comment
I have walked around in malls, roads, parks, and public places and have heard people audibly say "You should not be walking around people carrying your disease everywhere." Of course, we're all familiar with rude comments, but to imply that psoriasis is contagious is as about as ignorant as one can get.
Do you have any idea how awful such a remark makes me feel? Us psoriasis warriors understand how one negative comment can suck the strength out of us. This strength takes months to gather again. It's simply not fair.
The impact of stigma
You would have thought I would have toughened up. To be honest, I thought I had. I've survived through five decades. The sixties, seventies, eighties, and nineties. These remarks came in 2021. None of this was new to me. The hurt never goes away.
It is the lack of education around psoriasis that causes this type of stigma. These remarks that people pass along around psoriasis being contagious are baseless. People get psoriasis because of their genes, not because of bad hygiene, their diet or lifestyle, or any other habits.
They didn’t get it from someone else, and they cannot infect others.
Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition
Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition that causes symptoms to develop on the skin. Plaques or dry patches occur because the immune system is overactive. This causes inflammation that triggers the production of new skin cells more quickly than older skin cells can die off and be shed from the skin naturally.
Psoriasis is a chronic, life-long condition. It cannot be cured. We cycle through periods of flare-ups and remissions. Flare-ups are periods of time when symptoms get worse. Remissions are periods of time when the symptoms get better or even go away completely for a time.
People who have psoriasis can learn to identify and avoid their own psoriasis triggers, which are things in the environment that can cause psoriasis symptoms to flare up.
Physical and mental pain
The itching caused by psoriasis is different than that of other inflammatory skin conditions it happens more often, and the feeling of the itch can be more severe, with a burning quality.
Apart from the pain it gives, psoriasis ruins the physical appearance of my entire body. Each day, I look at myself in the mirror. I try not to feel awful at how my skin looks. Honestly, I have much more to worry about. Or maybe this is just how I avoid my negative feelings.
I no longer take any treatments for my psoriasis. There are too many side effects for me to handle. My nails have lost color, my skin looks like a torn, barren land and the pain is unbearable. There is a lot to say about what psoriasis feels like.
The importance of raising awareness
If you have psoriasis, you can help put an end to confusion and misunderstandings about the disease by talking openly with friends, family, and co-workers. And if you know people who have it, make sure they know that their condition doesn't affect your opinion of them or make you not want to be around them.
I will leave the rest on the readers to give this some thought. Extend unlimited support and love to people living with psoriasis or any other disease in the world. Let us join hands, raise awareness and offer support to make the world a better place to live and love.
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