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Tow very similar but different women reading an over sized book together.

How Do You Know if it is Psoriasis or Hidradenitis Suppurativa?

I have had psoriasis for over 50 years and I’m still learning that you are never too old to learn. Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition caused by inflammation and the skin cells grow at a speedy pace. I am always learning things that I did not know. Hidradenitis suppurativa is a chronic skin condition marked by inflammation of gland and secretion glands. It is also considered an autoimmune disease. Psoriasis and hidradenitis suppurativa are so similar in characteristics.

I met a lady during my advocacy work name Kim who like myself had psoriasis. She also had been diagnosed with a skin disease called hidradenitis suppurativa. She began to tell me of her life living with the two diseases at the same time and how challenging it was and how she had been depressed for years.

The similarities between hidradenitis suppurativa and psoriasis

Kim told me that she had inflammation of her follicles along with waxy glands. There were boils that showed up on her skin. Her quality of life that she once knew was gone. I began to do my own research and discovered some very much likeness to psoriasis. There seem to be some connections between hidradenitis suppurativa and psoriasis. One thing I know that is perfectly clear, we have both suffer from added challenges most of our lives. I had to sympathize with her because I knew what she was going through.

After searching and crying out for help for years, she found a credible doctor who put a name to her skin disorder. She had psoriasis and hidradenitis suppurativa. She was put on a treatment plan, handed a pamphlet about the two diseases and schedule to make another appointment in three months.

Coping with a visible condition

I shared with her how embarrassed I had been most of my life with psoriasis. I was afraid of people seeing the flaking, inflammation and thick scales on my skin. I couldn’t wear dark clothes if I was flaking or white clothes because I feared scratching and blood stains showing up on my clothes. She began to tell me of her humiliation of the odor of her disease and psoriasis combo. She said sometimes depending on the material of the clothes she had on the leakage would stick to the skin and there would be a very powerful smell. I told her I could relate.

I have had psoriasis so bad that it would be very painful to move around freely because the plaques were so thick that I would scrap them off with a comb. I also have a dual diagnosis of living with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. They both can be overwhelming and easily make you feel depressed. I began to tell her my ways of avoiding being depressed; of course, this doesn’t work for everyone.

Ways I cope with psoriasis

  • Get an awesome support system, google has a great source of information
  • Facebook is good for you not to feel alone, but sometimes it can make things worst
  • Focus on other things, share your story with family and friends
  • Help others to understand their disease – advocate
  • Reach people through social media and blogging
  • Stay positive – you will have your good days and your bad days
  • Be knowledgeable about your disease

Kim understands that she is no longer alone on this journey. At the end of the day, depression can and will manifest itself if we are isolated. She was so thankful for our meeting and sharing her story with someone who understood her life experience, pain, and suffering.

Sharing stories helps others feel less alone

There are so many people in this world that are having the same issues that we are. They also feel alone and think no one understands. Therefore, we need to be a part of something so that we can reach others. I have developed so many friendships on this road I have traveled with people just like me. I realize I am never alone. We have both decided to come out of the closet and talk about it. We all have the power to be a force to reckon with and inspire others. We will never give up the fight.

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