As a soldier in the United States Army, I have run into several issues with my psoriasis.
A couple of years ago I had a one-month training in the desert at Fort Irwin, CA. It was intense. We had to survive out in the desert without any showers or hot food -- just snacks and MREs (Meals, Ready-to-eat). My psoriasis had a terrible flare-up throughout the entire training exercise. I came out of it with red splotchy marks all over my body from being dirty and dry in the hot sun.
If it weren’t for a nice clean shower, body lotion, and some skin healing medicine, I would have had more scars from the entire experience. That’s an extreme story, but it still cripples a soldier in the Army.
In normal training environments, especially cooler environments, I don’t experience as many issues. As a soldier, you can always layer up to cover your skin, but you can’t undo the dirt and dry heat of the desert.
Ever since my traumatic experience in California, I made sure to always keep my skin moisturized and to clean any exposed areas as much as possible. It was a great learning lesson and I plan on making sure that my skin care comes first before going on missions and doing anything outside of my comfort zone.
My second job, in marketing, offers as a better environment for my skin. Working from home in a clean environment without the effects from the outdoors is a game changer. Ever since working from home, I haven’t had to deal with many psoriasis issues.
When winter comes, I’ll likely bundle up with extra layers to ensure the cold air doesn’t trigger any flare-ups. Anytime my face or skin is exposed is when I’m most vulnerable.
Advice I would offer to someone dealing with psoriasis is to always have extra clothes in your car just in case the weather takes a turn for the worse. That’s because getting to and from work is probably the worst part for someone with psoriasis. A sunny morning could lead to a chilly evening where flare-ups are more likely to occur
Additionally, on-the-go lotion is a great way to keep your skin moisturized to combat dryness. Dry is bad. Moisturized is good. Being self-sufficient in caring for your skin will help you get to and from work in a much less psoriasis-filled way and help you focus on the tasks at hand.
Photo Credit: Taiyou Nomachi/ DigitalVision via Getty Images