Crazy Assumptions Made About Psoriasis

The word assumption can be defined as something that one tries to accept as true without question or proof. Oh boy, is this true of managing life with psoriasis.

Those who live with this condition know. Facing assumptions not only adds to the stigma of this chronic condition but can take a toll on our mental health.

I'm more than just my psoriasis

Managing ignorant comments, rude stares, and hurtful questions is an unseen part of the reality of psoriasis. The truth is, psoriasis doesn't define me and I'm a person before my condition.

Below you will find some assumptions I've come across and faced as I move along in my psoriasis journey.

You must not eat right

How many times have you heard this statement? Several people have told me that if I just ate better, my psoriasis would disappear. While this may be a helpful suggestion for some, it's not fair to assume it would apply to all.

In the past, I have gone gluten free forcing myself to eat healthier, and after a lot of sacrifice and 4 months later, my psoriasis still remained.

You need to drink more water

While water does help to promote healthier skin, it is not a cure for those with psoriasis. Yes, water may help the skin look better in specific ways, but it is not to be assumed that the solution to this autoimmune disease is as simple as drinking 8-10 glasses of water a day.

You just need to moisturize more

It's disheartening to know people think getting rid of psoriasis is as simple as Vaseline, vitamin E capsules, or other over-the-counter remedies.

These items might help with the symptoms of the disease but are only a short term remedy for flakiness and dryness.

That you're expected to be a spokesperson for the disease

I'm very comfortable speaking about my disease, but that is not to assume everyone is at this same comfort level. I talked to a fellow psoriasis sufferer who talked about the woes of people being bold enough to ask, "Hey, what's going on with your skin?" I've even had a guy walk up to me and say, "You are a pretty girl but have ugly skin."

Please assess a person's comfort level before engaging in questions. Everyone does not want to be forced to talk about their psoriasis.

It's easy to just show off your scaly plaques

Many of my friends do this as a way of endearment and don't realize how annoying it can be. They always say what they would do if they had psoriasis. How they would wear this or wear that and not care what others had to say.

Until you encounter the challenge, your thoughts are only a theory. In reality, you can't truly say what you would do if you had a hypothetical health condition. Verbally expressing what you would do is much easier said than done.

It's just dry skin

If I had a dollar for every time I heard this statement regarding psoriasis, I would be a rich woman. If you have psoriasis or are close to someone who has the condition, you know firsthand that this disease is much more than "dry skin."

It's a disease of the immune system associated with a host of other health issues.

All you need is some head and shoulders shampoo

I can't tell you how many times I've gone to the beauty salon only for my scalp psoriasis to be mistaken as an issue of dandruff.

You can use regular products

Many with psoriasis have sensitive skin. Therefore, items with fragrances such as soaps, washing detergents, and hand soaps can be harsh on the skin.

People without the disease may not be aware of this issue and may think it's strange you use all free and transparent products.

It's poison ivy, bed bug bites, or scabies

So one of the most hurtful stigmas is when others reinterpret our psoriasis to be a disease that is contagious or caused by something we are doing wrong.

You must not wash properly

Some people assume that psoriasis is caused by poor hygiene, not washing enough, or using the wrong products.

Again psoriasis is an issue of an over-reactive immune system and is not directly tied to something a person is doing wrong.

You have lice

Last year I attended a meeting about psoriasis with The Food and Drug Administration about the struggles of living with psoriasis. One of the patients recalled when she was in elementary school, and her teacher accused her flakes of being lice.

What assumptions have you heard from others in regards to your disease? Let us know in the comments.

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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