alt=a person distracts himself from his psoriasis by birdwatching with a friend

The Power Of Distraction With Psoriasis

When psoriasis plaques begin to spread, it feels like there is no end in sight. These flare-ups can cause the majority of us to begin to seek different types of relief from the painful symptoms.

We may look for articles full of helpful advice, we may turn to a community and ask for direct insight or we may have a plan at the ready to immediately follow up with our medical team.

Psoriasis is a disease that can be disabling in so many ways.

Physically, we may feel tired and plaques may hurt or bleed. Mentally, we become anxious, depressed, or worse. When the different aspects of this condition can often feel so heavy, the power of distraction can be a helpful tool.

When I was first diagnosed and the proceeding years thereafter, I never really thought about distracting myself. At the time, I was just all consumed by this condition and thinking about what I could do to get rid of it.

As my psoriasis has flared up from time to time and I have tried different medications, I’ve begun to think about distraction as a useful tool.

Why distract yourself?

How is that going to get rid of psoriasis? It’s a life-long disease that comes and goes, how will distracting help?

One of my earlier points was about how disabling psoriasis can be: physically and mentally. Distracting yourself, then, by getting away from the sensation to scratch or itch, or away from feeling low or depressed, can help to move your thought processes away from the impact of psoriasis.

You’re right; it’s not a fix. It won’t get rid of the condition. It won’t take away the physical or mental burden. But, what it’s done for me is move me into a space. A space where I can breathe and accept the realities of the condition.

Psoriasis does not define me.

True, distraction has not healed my lesions or made my psoriasis better, but it’s stopped me from piling so much pressure on myself to find solutions and it’s stopped me from focusing on the condition as being my entire identity.

We all want solutions to things. To find a way through. To get something we don’t like gone so we don’t have that burden anymore. In doing so, however, we can look at other ways of helping ourselves. There’s no cure for psoriasis. That is unfortunately true.

So as well as using moisturizers or coconut oil or a biologic injection, we need to find other ways to manage the power this condition has over us.

Distraction can be a powerful tool

And that’s why I’m sharing my story on distraction. It may be as simple as going for a walk when you feel an incessant need to itch or scratch. It may be speaking to a family member or friend when you feel low because your skin is flaring.

Whatever it is, distraction can be a powerful tool for managing symptoms. At the same time, please don't give up on getting your psoriasis under control. But while you’re doing those things and in the interim, it can be useful to find other ways to manage too.

So, if you’ve not tried distraction or you’re in the early stages of your psoriasis diagnosis, try it out. Don’t be too hard on yourself, though. Write down some notes and see what activities or thoughts you can do to distract yourself when you’re in the middle of a flare.

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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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