My Interview With My Friend Who Has Scalp Psoriasis
Four years ago, I had the privilege of going to the National Psoriasis Foundation conference. While I had already had the honor of meeting this wonderful lady virtually, to my amazement, she was the first person I saw when I got to the hotel.
In my excitement to meet her face to face, I went straight to her instead of the front desk. As soon as I said my name, she jumped from her chair and greeted me with the biggest hug and smile. That first meeting has turned into a beautiful friendship that is still very dear to me to this day. She is always eager to share her story with everyone.
An interview with a friend
Our friendship was strong from the beginning. We shared in that bond of having psoriasis. No judgments. To both our surprise our husbands jelled together just as well as we did. For men, that is a definite accomplishment. Maybe it was a subject that they could relate to with each other: being married to women who have psoriasis.
It felt natural for us to agree to have a vacation together. A year after the conference we spent a whole week in Florida together. It was during this time that I found out how much she had been battling scalp psoriasis and to what extent. What follows is an interview I did with my dear friend, Tami Seretti to continue to share her story.
What age did your scalp psoriasis start?
My scalp psoriasis started at the age of 27. I started having patches on my scalp before the doctor even told me what it was. It made me feel dirty and ugly. The flakes would get on my clothes and my glasses would be covered in flakes all the time. It hasn't always led to me losing all my hair though.
The first time I lost all my hair was in 2015 when my biologic quit working. When my scalp psoriasis gets too thick, I start losing a significant amount of hair. It was so much better to just shave it off. This stopped the pain and the feeling that my scalp is one size too small.
If I want to hide my scalp psoriasis, I use beanies or buffs. There have been times where I've got out in public without hiding it. Once my scalp is cleared up, I can go without a head covering after about 6 weeks.
What kind reactions did you have in public?
So many! I've had people tell me I need to wash my hair. I have been turned away from salons. I've gotten so many "helpful" suggestions like shampoos and bathing properly. I have even been told I should not go out in public.
My favorite reaction was at a doctor's office, however. The assistant said I had "ashes in my hair". I told her it was psoriasis which led to her comment of "Oh, that is so gross!" She did apologize but that damage was done.
What would you tell someone who is newly diagnosed with scalp psoriasis?
It sucks, it does. There is no getting around that. But you are not alone. The most important thing to know is that if you have psoriasis on your scalp or anywhere else - that is coming from internal inflammation. It's imperative that it gets treated.
It's not as uncommon as you think. See a dermatologist. Make sure your doctors, all of your doctors are aware of the comorbidities of psoriasis. It's important to be proactive, and remember that you are strong and beautiful, no matter what.
The insecurity of scalp psoriasis
If you’ve ever felt embarrassed by your psoriasis, you’re not alone. Many people with psoriasis feel self-conscious or embarrassed about their condition - especially scalp psoriasis.
Do you have a story you'd like to share about scalp psoriasis?
Does your psoriasis skin feel out of control? How are you managing?