Some people with psoriasis find that weather can cause changes in their symptoms. But no matter the temperature, there are several techniques you can use to control flare-ups.
Tips for managing psoriasis in cold weather
For many people with psoriasis, winter brings more than just low temperatures and wet weather. It can actually make their psoriasis worse. Here are some tips to help manage your symptoms in the cold:
- Wear warm gloves to protect your hands
- In dry, cold weather, use a humidifier if the air in your home feels dry. When using a heater or radiator, or when sitting by a fire, sit far enough away that you cannot feel the heat directly on your skin
- When you have the heat on, try using a humidifier to help put moisture back into the air
- Avoid using too much soap, which can dry out your skin
- Moisturize your skin right after you shower to help keep the water in your skin
- For your overall health, stay hydrated by drinking several glasses of water a day
Tips for managing psoriasis in the summer
Some people actually find that their symptoms seem to improve during the summer. This may be because of the effects of the sun’s ultraviolet rays. But, it’s important to avoid sunburn, which can make your psoriasis symptoms worse. Check with your dermatologist to make sure that the sunblock you are using will not irritate your symptoms. Use these tips from the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) to help manage psoriasis in warm weather:
- Wear wide-brimmed hats and sunglasses to protect your scalp and face
- Stay in the shade, when possible
- Be more careful between 10 am and 4 pm, when the sun rays are strongest
- Use a broad-spectrum sunblock with an SPF of at least 30
If you are on any medicines that make your skin sensitive to sunlight, or are using phototherapy to treat your psoriasis, ask your dermatologist what precautions you should take.