You Get A Giveaway! You Get A Giveaway! Everyone Gets A Giveaway!

giveaway-pink-polka-dot

 

So, FREE stuff rocks.

With that said, I’m having my first giveaway soon! Thanks to Etsy and all the absolutely amazing people working so hard on there, I’m happy to say that I’ll be giving away at least 5 really amazing travel packages. Why?

Well, I travel a lot. And it’s been really tough on my body and my skin. A lot of the time I carry my bag on just because it’s easier (or because I’m cheap and not paying $25!!) – so I know if I bring my creams and medicines and special shampoos, I risk having them tossed.

In the near future I’ll be posting a blog about traveling with psoriasis and to the first 5 people who post a picture of their psoriasis or their battle with psoriasis on my Facebook page …. Facebook.com/SeeingPspots … I will be sending you a toiletry bag (I have men’s and women’s, don’t worry) with creams and oils and soaps and lots of fun stuff to bring on your next trip.

I’ll be in touch soon but for now LIKE my Facebook and follow me. I’ll let you know a week in advance when this will take place.

Hugs and Love to you All!

#KeepCalmAndSpotOn

 

The First Psign Of Pspots…

I dreaded this day but it’s here: The first sign of psoriasis.

I know it seems small from the picture (it’s a camera phone, cut me some slack) but my psoriasis seems to be making a triumphant return! yay!

No, seriously. My psoriasis seems to be creeping up on me. It started on my legs (as seen in picture, along with a wrestling belt – don’t judge me) my torso and, lastly, my face which is tough because, if you didn’t notice, I’m a woman and we like makeup sometimes. So what do I do?

For my face, I just do my best to keep makeup off of it as best as I can. I wash it but not too often because I don’t like to dry my skin out. I’m a big fan of tar soap so I apply that or some other “derm. approved” face wash.

For my body I stick with the Tar soaps or baby wash. I keep my showers at a warm, not hot, temperature. I wash my hair as infrequently as it allows (gross but true). I moisturize and I APPLY MY MEDICATIONS! If you have been given topicals by your doctor, please… use them! Nip this in the bud. But if you have no topicals, can’t afford the medications or just need time to get to a dermatologist, I encourage over-the-counter creams with tar. They smell, they’re not pretty, but slap that sucker on to your skin and saran wrap it up overnight.

The key is to find your own flow, your own routine, and just stick with it. Keep informing yourself regarding different treatment methods and what’s out there for psoriasis. Stay ahead of the game and on top of your health.

** I always encourage you to seek professional medical attention. All views and opinions here are my own and I am NOT a doctor **

How The H-E-Double-Hockey-Sticks (HELL) Did You Do It???

Due to the OVERWHELMING request from you guys to know what I do to help my skin, (did I mention how appreciative I am for all the love? Well, I am.) I’m dedicating an entire blog to you all and spilling the beans. Please keep in mind *** I AM NOT A DOCTOR OR A MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL, ALL ACCOUNTS ARE MY OWN PERSONAL EXPERIENCES AND YOU SHOULD ALWAYS SEEK PROFESSIONAL COUNSELING WITH ANY MEDICAL CONDITION *** Now that we got the boring stuff out of the way…

Early 2014 I ran into a few life snags. I was stressed, I was eating poorly due to this and I just wasn’t taking care of myself. At All. As my stress increased, i began to see tiny dots on my body. I visited a doctor and he diagnosed it as Guttate Psoriasis (thanks doc. for the $200 bill… you were wrong). He gave me a topical lotion with steroids and sent me on my way.

A month passed and it just got worse. The tiny circles were now giant red, irritated, bleeding circles. Ouch. Not only were they painful but they began to itch and grow plaques (white scales that just fell of all over the house). How embarrassing !?!? But no one was telling me what to do because NO ONE KNEW. The sad thing is… most doctors are not informed enough to inform us. So what do you do? I took charge and researched and researched and then I cried and cried. Was I going to look like this forever? Who will want to date me? Who will even want to be in public with me? So I became pro-active.

AGAIN, DO NOT TAKE WHAT I TELL YOU AS SERIOUS MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS SEEK OUT A PHYSICIAN.

TIPS:

-Don’t itch. I know it hurts, I know it itches and I know you want to pick those tiny little pieces of skin that seem to just about be falling off. DON’T. Let them come off on their own.

-Showers… luke warm showers. Not hot. And do not cheat and use a loofa (I know who you are). Use a bar of soap or a lather from a liquid soap. I recommend any baby soaps as they have little or no chemicals in them (same for lotions) … also, tar soaps have been amazing to me but everyones skin is different. Trial and error is best. Head and Shoulders for hair or T-Gel for hair. They are expensive so use them only when needed and don’t over wash hair if you don’t need to. Oils are OK!!

-As said above, keep your lotions chemical free. Baby lotions work best for me.

-Washing your clothes seems like a small thing but the detergent you use can affect your skin as well. Tide works best for me so I buy the Tide Pods.

– I don’t know what or if your doctor prescribed or recommended a lotion. If he or she did, i suggest rubbing it on the parts of your body that need it… if he did not then I suggest buying TAR based lotions an rubbing it on and saran wrapping those body parts. It seems ridiculous but it keeps the lotion on and soaks it in overnight. Your skin will be soft and supple in the morning.

-If you itch in the evening, wear gloves. Ridiculous? YUP! but you will be clear as soon as you can spell PSORIASIS.

-KEEP YOUR NAILS SHORT!!! This leaves less room for scratching. I know it sucks ladies but it’s worth it.

-Vitamins!!!! Take a daily vitamin and some vitamin D every day

-Your diet. When I chose to eat better my body thanked me. I limited alcohol consumption, red meat and I started eating Paleo. Paleo is essentially what the “cavemen” ate. Anything you can pick or kill. Fruits, veggies, meats. No carbs or sugars. If not just for your disease, do it for your overall health. You will feel stronger, healthier and happier. I assure you.

-Add exercise!!!! This disease attacks our immune system. Attack it back!!! Eat right, work out, kick it’s ass!!

There are many other things I recommend but will not on my blog. Medications have helped many people, I myself used UV therapy, topical lotions, etc. All things your doctor can prescribe …

BUT my general advice is eat right, treat your skin well. get some natural sunlight. and be positive. it seems simple but im living proof. I love you all and feel your pain. I am here always for any of you. ❤ SeeingPspots

I am ALWAYS available for support and question at seeingpspots@gmail.com ❤ Keep positive, keep hope

Get By With A Little Help From Your Friends

O.K. so I don’t think any of the F.R.I.E.N.D.S. cast members has psoriasis BUT I cannot stress how important it is to have support when you are struggling with psoriasis. When I first found out I spent DAYS in bed. You can’t really understand how horrible it feels to have much of your skin taken over by your own bodies immune system. ::: Insert dramatic, tearful fall to knees action :::    WHYYYYYYY LORD, WHYYYYYYY?    ::: shakes fist at sky :::

Sigh. I know. It psucks. But when i got my butt out of bed and threw myself head first into my disease by writing about it, talking about it, venting about it and blogging about it, I began to meet people who were willing to talk about their struggle. And I promise it makes all the difference. (I talk to Brooklyn the Wonder Pup all the time about it!)

I think we as psoriasis sufferers tend to be so accustomed to hiding under layers of clothes and lies about our skin that we just don’t know how to be open about it. “What’s everyone going to think if they know? I’m not dirty. It’s not contagious. Am I not going to be invited to go into Amanda’s pool next weekend? Will everyone be disgusted by my flaking skin?” And my answer to all those will be, some people are going to be ignorant, yes, and most people are not going to understand your daily struggle with the disease but I can almost say with 100% certainty that ANYONE within the psoriasis community will embrace you and support you.

So please… inform yourself so that you can inform others and don’t be afraid to reach out to anyone anywhere in the psoriasis community. If anyone literally feels your pain, we do.

ON THAT NOTE… I’m going to leave the board open to discussion and I promise I will answer every question. Consider me your first Pso. Friend =) – Brittany

The First Sign Of Pspots

First let me start by apologizing for my hiatus. I’m back! Now let’s get to today’s business… shall we?

So we all know my first outbreak was about a year ago. It was misdiagnosed by numerous doctors for MONTHS. This was what ultimately caused my Psoriasis Spiral i.e. not a patch of skin on my body, aside from my face, was not completely covered in red patches. It was awful.

Because of this, I pay very close attention to my body (I look a little like inspector gadget) so that when spots begin to appear I can do my very best to nip it in the bud. I can see them begin to resurface a little now and here’s what I ask myself..

1) What’s going on in my life right now? Am I stressed? How am I feeling?

2) What am I doing to take care of my body? Am I working out? Eating healthy food? Keeping up with my hygiene?

3) Have I changed anything? My lotions? Soaps? Perfumes?

4) Where am I showing signs of Psoriasis?

It’s really important for you to know what’s happening to your body and around your body (or in your head) when you have a flare up. For example, I can tell you I am super stressed right now but I’m not eating terribly, I haven’t changed my diet much and I haven’t changed my regimen. I am showing spots on my face and joints. NOW WHAT???

Kick your butt into high gear and start applying your lotions, stay on top of your scratching and since stress seems to be a personal trigger for me I started meditating again, etc.  JUST BECAUSE THERE IS NO CURE, DO NOT DESPAIR. TAKE ACTION AND MANAGE YOUR PSORIASIS!! IT’S YOUR BODY, YOU ARE THE PILOT.

I’ll keep you posted on my spots and my progress. ❤

Put Down The Breast Milk and Nobody Gets Hurt

So I think anyone who has psoriasis or has caught themselves glued to a Kardashian Marathon on TV (you know who you are, “just dusting the entertainment center and it was on in the background”) knows about the infamous breast milk episode. If you don’t, here’s the recap: Kim K. has psoriasis and she heard that breast milk helps to control the outbreaks. So, being Kim K., she kinda steals some of her lactating sisters’ breast milk to try it out.

First and foremost, allow me to clear this up for you before you go popping up at a friends home grazing her fridge for breast milk; BREAST MILK DOES NOT HELP TO CLEAR UP PSORIASIS. I know the feeling of complete desperation when you have an outbreak, trust me. But please don’t throw a milk pumping party based on KK’s little stunt. That being said… Why don’t we chat about what WILL help when you have a flare up.

There are really so many different things you can do to manage your psoriasis but lets narrow this blog down to topical treatments. A topical treatment would be anything you put on top of your skin. Topicals slow down or normalize excessive cell reproduction and reduce psoriasis inflammation.

Over the counter:

Salicylic acid: This is classified as a peeling agent and works by causing the outer layer of skin to shed. It acts as a scale lifter, helping to soften and remove psoriasis scales.

Coal Tar: This works really well for me. It does smell a little funky but you get used to it. “Tar can help slow the rapid growth of skin cells and restore the skin’s appearance. In addition, it can help reduce the inflammation, itching and scaling of psoriasis. Generally, the higher the concentration of tar, the more potent the product.” (psoriasis.org) I personally like the Grandpa Brand and I swear by their tar soap. If I am using tar creams or ointments, I typically wrap that part of my body in saran wrap because it is a little messy. Leave it on for a few hours or even overnight if you can and then bathe as usual.

Soaps, Lotions and Perfumes… oh my! I always take lukewarm showers, never too hot because it irritates the skin, and I steer clear of soaps with any fragrance in them. If I don’t use my Grandpa Tar Soap, I use baby wash. (So basically I smell like I am either 3 years old or 103 years old). The same goes for my lotion. Simple, no perfumes or chemicals. Again, I find baby lotion works well for me. OK ladies (and gents)… here’s the tricky one. Perfumes and/or colognes. I know, I know… you have a hot date tonight and you don’t want to smell like Benjamin Button (or maybe you do, depending on what age he’s at). I recommend spraying your clothing, setting it aside and letting it settle. So i promise you will smell great and since you aren’t directly applying it to your skin, you’re definitely minimizing your chances of irritation.

Prescriptions:

I CANNOT stress this enough: do NOT use anyone else’s skin creams when it comes to prescribed lotions and creams. Everyone’s skin is different so please do not use anything unless it is prescribed to you. Consult your doctor about any creams or sprays in general but SPECIFICALLY if they are not over the counter.

Typically your doctor of dermatologist will prescribe a steroid cream or spray of some sort. These did not work for me but they have worked for many other people I know.

The key to all this is to be patient. Find a combination and regiment that works for YOU. It took me some time but I did manage to get a system going and a flow and It sounds like a lot of work, I know, but once you get into the swing of things, all this applying, spraying, wrapping, washing, rubbing… it will become second nature.

Moral of the story is: Milk a cow, not your friends; it’s not cool.

 

*** Are there any products you use that work for you better than others? Do you have any tricks you want to share? (psst.. we won’t tell) ***