Self-Esteem and Psoriasis: Is Psoriasis Impacting Your Self-Confidence?
Dealing with psoriasis is painful enough (literally), but it can also really throw the way you think about yourself out of whack as well.
You’re not only in pain, but you’re also worrying about what you look like and what other people are thinking about your skin. It’s an awful thing to deal with, and sometimes it’s tough to face the outside world.
6 Ways to Boost Your Self-Esteem
Here are a few things that I try to do when I’m dealing with a psoriasis flare-up, and perhaps you can try them too to boost your confidence.
1. Wear an Outfit You Love
There’s something about putting on an outfit that you feel utterly confident wearing. It suddenly makes you feel like you could conquer any problems that come your way.
And I’ve found it’s not much different when you’re dealing with psoriasis. Putting on your ‘power outfit’ can do wonders for your self-esteem and almost make you forget your psoriasis.
2. Explain What Psoriasis Is
I’ve found that opening up and telling the people you deal with regularly about what you’re suffering from.
When people are curious, they can ask questions without thinking about the impact. All of this can make you feel worse. But if you get in there first, tell them what psoriasis is, and explain a bit about it, then it usually stops the questions and concerned stares.
You’ll be able to get stuck into your daily life again without feeling conscious about who’s looking at you or talking about you behind your back.
3. Talk to Someone
If your flare-up is taking a bigger toll on you, which can’t easily be explained away, you could try the approach of one-to-one counseling from friends, family, or a professional.
I’ve found that having a vent to someone close to me, like my mom, really helps ease the burden of having all the stress of psoriasis weighing on your shoulders.
It really can get you down, but in many situations, a flare-up is a temporary thing that will soften and ease over time. We just have to ride the bad times out. Talking to a doctor can also help.
If you’re suffering and you feel like it’s taking over your life, they might be able to advise you on another course of action, whether it’s medical or emotional.
4. Eat Well
I don’t know about you, but when I eat terribly, I feel ten times worse about myself than I did before – psoriasis or no psoriasis. When I have a flare-up, I tend to take it as a sign that my body isn’t doing too well, and I should treat it kindly.
I tend to start to eat better and drink more water, and, yes, it could all be in my head, but I do start to feel more energetic and confident and able to tackle anything, even with psoriasis in tow.
Pack your lunch for work full of fun, tasty, and healthy snacks, and keep your water bottle nearby so you can treat your body and your mind when you’re feeling low.
5. Take Some Time Out for Yourself
This one you’d think would be quite self-explanatory and straightforward, but it isn’t. Trying to take time out for yourself to relax and unwind is something not too many people are good at.
For busy people with lots going on, it even comes with a feeling of guilt. If you’re someone who feels bad about taking time out, start with something small, like a relaxing bath (double it with treatment by adding some coal tar).
Being able to switch off from the stresses of the real world for a little while can do wonders for your mental health.
If you’ve found yourself with a day that you don’t need to do anything at all, and there’s no reason for you to put yourself in a situation where you may feel self-conscious – don’t do it. Stay home, curl up with a good book or TV show, and just do something for you.
The break from people and having to explain what you're going through will do wonders for your self-esteem.
6. Don’t Panic
My biggest words of wisdom for you would be not to panic. When you’re dealing with a psoriasis flare-up and have to continue with your everyday life, a considerable amount of panic can wash over you.
You’re worrying about your flare-up initially, but then you start worrying what everyone thinks, and the cycle continues. Don’t panic. The worst of your flare-up is temporary, and after a little while it’ll ease, and everything will go back to normal.
I’ve found that panicking can slow the healing process, so don’t ignore what your body is trying to tell you and just relax. Everything will be normal again soon.
There’s no correct way to cope with psoriasis and how it knocks your confidence. But the most important thing to remember is that psoriasis doesn’t change you at all. Just keep your head up, take your own time, and keep going.