It may be quite clear from the title of this post that I am a Game of Thrones fan. This isn’t going to be a post where I relate psoriasis to The Game of thrones, although it has crossed my mind that I could be Simon of the House Stark fighting the might of the House Psoriasis. Or maybe I am one of the Whitewalkers and the healthcare professionals are the Night’s Watch. The fun I could have making up my own little parody world. I simply used the title to say what it means, winter is coming, and for psoriasis sufferers and others with dry skin conditions this can be the worst time of year. In the past I have been pretty poor at preparing myself for the cold mornings and chilly winter nights. This is the first winter for some time where my skin has been relatively clear to start with so usually I am already in the midst of a routine. This year I have to think about it and for my psoriasis addled brain that is a task I find most tedious. So here are my tips for preparing for winter.
Moisturise. Sounds simple really and it is. Get a good moisturiser to start that protection and do it every day whether you’re going out in the cold or not. For me currently I use a lotion during the day as they’re lighter and soak in better than creams or ointment. At night a good cream moisturiser is a must, build up the protection of your skin before the next day. Aveeno, Boots Derma Care and Epaderm are my usual stock items. Always worth trying something new though so keep and eye out on offers. Avoid anything with added perfume. For added protection, baby oil at night is good, I found Mia Moo do a good baby oil.
Make sure you have a stock of your topical treatment (if using one). It seems there are many supply issues with a lot of the medications lately so make sure you don’t run out. Always important and more so in winter as it is a time when flare ups can attack quickly. I won’t suggest anything here as you need to consult your doctor on the best medication.
Hand cream. Oh I sound so masculine. Make sure you use a good hand cream, your hands are more exposed than most of your body so they need some extra protection. The main one I use is Aveeno hand cream, for me it is the least greasy. I am trying something new at the moment though and will let you know how that goes.
Don’t forget your face. This is an area that I have found difficult to manage in the past, I find a lot of creams leave my face feeling greasy. For men I would suggest a good after shave balm or moisturiser. I tend to go for L’Oreal or Nivea’s skincare range. Sometimes pricey but the best I have found. Sorry I can’t really suggest anything for the ladies out there.
Have a bath. Firstly your friends and family will thank you for it. Don’t have it too hot as it will just dry your skin and out and you can risk damaging your skin. There are plenty of additives you can put in the bath, sea salts, balneum, oilatum. Not only do they help protect your skin, you can light a few candles, put on some music and relax so it’s quite therapeutic. If you prefer showers, you can wash with most moisturisers, Epaderm is good or you could get yourself a big tub of Diprobase or Boots Derma Care.
As it is coming up to Christmas there are a lot of offers out there so take advantage and stock up. Put some on your Christmas list and get the family to buy you a few bits. They will be presents you will definitely use and save you a lot of money. I would like to say that the ranges I mention above are ones I always have in my cupboard, I am not sponsored by them or asked to promote them, hence no links to their sites. They are simply what I find works and may not be suitable for everyone. Our skin is unique, you are unique so find what works best for you.
If, like me, you have psoriatic arthritis as well then the cold is definitely not our friend. The only advise I can really give for this is wrap up in layers. I find then if I get too warm I can just shed a layer and cool down gently which may even prevent the effect of sudden cooling and heating on your skin. I know this is not so easy if you’re going out to a party, if you look after yourself most of the time then you can have those days where you maybe don’t layer up as much or use as much moisturiser. If you are looking for tips on what to wear, my friend The Flaky Fashionista always has great ideas. So now we’re set for the winter and the party season will soon start so get out there and enjoy yourselves and try not to think about psoriasis too much.