In high school my friends used to tell me I had perfect skin. That’s no longer the case, however. I’ve been hiding my skin as best I can since mid-August when little patches of rash started popping up on the tops of my hands and behind my ears.
This thing wasn’t completely foreign to me. When I was really stressed in college and while planning the wedding, the red/itchy spots would appear. I invested a lot of money on different lotions, and nothing really worked except for a prescribed cream that had some steroids in it. But my hands were shiny and new for the wedding, so I was happy.
That was then though. Right now I look kind of like a leper. The rash has spread from my ears down my neck, across my collarbone and is creeping down my shoulders each day. The spots appeared at the corners of my eyes and the insides of my elbows. It is even on my lower legs. I wish this wasn’t so. And since I’ve been pretty lucky with my health all my life, when the doctor I saw last week diagnosed me with stage two guttate psoriasis, my heart dropped (further personal research shows similiar symptoms to Celiac Disease called dermatitis herpetiformis). I had been
halfway hoping that I’d just wake up one morning with it all gone. But that is not going to happen unless I make drastic changes to my daily routine. How, you may be wondering? Most significantly by altering my diet, and also by using higher strength steroidal ointment.
What does my diet have to do with psoriasis? I asked that same question when my doctor first diagnosed me. Apparently the foods that cause allergies may be to blame. Although my only known allergy up to this point is to cottonwood trees, the makeup of allergenic foods can still have an effect on me. That’s when my doctor proposed cleansing my body of processed, preserved, and allergenic foods. He said I have to be strict–something I’ve proved over and over again to be no good at (when it comes to diet (and exercise for that matter)).
No shellfish. No dairy. No strawberries. No peanuts. No wheat. I may have to go full on gluten-free by the end of this. Right now I am creating a weekly routine of lots of oatmeal, sweet potatoes, and safe salad fixings. The fact that I have a higher dose of steroid ointment is kind of freaking me out, but I’m trying to be extra careful with it. Although the thought of not eating my favorite foods is really scary, if it makes my skin clear up it will be worth it.
Because of my skin condition, I’ve been extremely self-conscious. I worried myself into a turtleneck for Ethan’s birthday bash, but I cringed every time I had to use my hands during Monopoly. With prospects of upcoming social events, I’m wishing for a speedy recovery. I will eventually get an appointment with a dermatologist, but until then it’s eat like a rabbit and lube up twice a day.
This certainly isn’t a glamorous side of my life right now, and I wanted to share it with you for precisely that reason. I’m still a little scared of what you might think (I’ve had some bad reactions to it already), but I promise I’m not trying to gross you out. Do you have any experience with skin disorders? If you have any recipes to help spice up my diet, I’d love for you to email them to me.
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