Thursday, December 15, 2005

Psoriasis Treatment - Update 6

Ok, so here is the long awaited psoriasis update.

Here are the various things I've been trying . . .

Supplements
Things were going great for a while. I tried various oils but realized that I like the convenience (and non-taste) factor of capsules much better. Plus, you don't have to refrigerate them! So, after trying the lemony-for-a-while NutraSea Fish Oil and the feels-like-motor-oil flax oil, I've forgone them in favour of an Omega 3-6-9 capsule sold at a very reasonable price from Costco. I'm currently taking slightly more than the recommended dosage on the bottle to try to get closer to the potency of the Nutra-Sea.

I am also taking Zinc, Selenium, and Folic Acid, which are all somehow supposed to work well against inflammatory conditions. I think the Zinc is also partially responsible for my robust health during this cold and flu season. I'm come down with a slight cold lately which is barely noticeable to myself, let alone others. Let's hope that this healthy streak continues.

Lotions and Potions
Well, I'm still not using any prescription creams on my spots. I am moisturizing every day as per usual with my St. Ives' Collagen Elastin lotion. I still love this lotion. It's cheap and works really well on my skin.

I've also been using an ointment sent to Canada from my aunt in Germany. I'd love to have an ingredient list as that would be useful for those suffering from psoriasis who wish to try it. All I know is it's a mustard yellow colour, it's greasy, and smells like . . . well, like an ointment.

I recently picked up some coconut oil because I've heard it can have good results when used on the skin and the scalp. Not to mention some benefits from taking it internally every day. I don't think I'll start eating it (although I tasted a bit and it does have a buttery kind of taste) but I might start applying it to my spots and especially my scalp (it also has benefits for hair).

I finished my T-Gel shampoo and am not going to buy another bottle. There are several reasons for this. One, it's expensive. Two, I didn't notice improvement in my scalp psoriasis. Three, Lance uses Denorex, which is also useful for controlling the itch of psoriasis, as well as, or better, than the T-Gel.

Other Factors
There have been a number of other things I've been doing that I think are influencing my psoriasis progress. I've been interested lately in more healthy cosmetics and hair treatments. During the many hours of internet reading, I've come across some different techniques. This is where I read about the coconut oil being useful. I've also started using much more conditioner and started occassionally using only conditioner to clean my hair (it actually does work). This really helps the flakes slip out of my hair. Plus, it adds to the moisture level of my scalp itself. The other thing I've been doing before washing my hair is something called scritching. I find it really helpful in loosening the scales and flakes from my head and increasing circulation in my scalp.

Progress?
So, have I seen much progress? Yes, and, No.

I've seen a lot of progress on the psoriasis on my torso. My bellybutton looks clean! Yippee! The spots around my chest and breasts have decresed dramatically! Unfortunately, there are still a couple between my breasts that are visible when I wear my bathing suit and my wedding dress (which is on order). I have about three spots on my back and one on my right shin, which isn't bad. So, in these areas, I am seeing progress.

The psoriasis on my head is a different story. I have a spot on my forehead just above and next to my left eyebrow. I also have spots around my hairline and all over my scalp. The area around my ears has especially been driving my crazy lately! I also recently noticed two new spots appearing on my face. One is on my left cheek directly below my eye. The other is on the right side of the bridge of my nose. They are very faint so far so I'm sure I'm the only one who really notices. But, I still stress out about getting very visible spots. This in turn, leads to worse psoriasis since stress triggers a flare up. I also recently learned that colds and flus can trigger flare ups once they are finished, so I'm prepared for that after my current little cold.

What Next?
Well, I'm planning on continuing to take my supplements, because I feel those are working. I might add something to aid in the digestion/cleaning out of my stomach and intestines. The only problem is those sorts of things tend to be expensive. There is also a doctor I've heard of in Vancouver who does a blood test to see if you are optimally healthy. He can identify areas you are deficient in and help you find a supplement routine that works for you. So, I might do that. But, again, it's at least $100 and he's booked 2-3 months in advance.

I'm going to continue my hair treatments and I'd like to start treating my scalp with the coconut oil to see if that helps. I may even rub in my aunt's ointment. The issue with this is that it makes my super-fine blonde hair look greasy. Ideally I'd like to leave the treatment on for a while and try it regularly. But, with my work schedule, I only get one day off a week. That day is usually spent doing other things and going out to places and I don't really want to look like a greaseball for those things either. So, I'll see what I can manage and may do some overnight treatments with a shower in the morning.

I've put in an order for some mineral makeup samples. I've heard these can be a bit drying, but beneficial for overall skin health. Hopefully, that'll help the skin on my face as well. I'm just a little concerned because it is powder makeup and might make my dry flaky psoriasis spots stand out more. But, we'll have to wait and see how things go.

Ok, there's my treatment update. I hope I haven't forgotten anything!

1 comment:

James said...

Hi Jenn, I am person with psoriasis, too and wanted you to know that I recently moved to Germany and saw a new dermatologist. I am shocked at how well I seem to be healing. I would like to share my story with you. This is legit, I am NOT selling anything, I just feel for you because I have psoriasis, too. Check out my blog, too...(I just searched blogger for psoriasis and came across your blog)