I thought this little flare I’m having was caused by the occasional bit of dairy. And when I say occasional, I mean not very often. I was wrong. And I think this is important.
I live in a 100+ year old building, in an area of other older, heritage houses. The good news is wood floors, high ceilings, claw-foot bathtub, etc. It’s unique. I love it. But the bad news is that in our building (4 apartments) there is no laundry facility.
So, I’ve been doing my laundry at a neighbour’s place for the past couple of years. About two weeks ago, I noticed that the water coming off the final rinse was not clear. It had soap in it. And not just a little.
And this flare has been unconventional. It’s only on the inside of my upper legs and a little on the inside of my arms. Now, everyone with psoriasis has a unique pattern of plaques and spots, but more often than not the elbows, knees, ankles are pretty standard areas for psoriasis. But I’m not getting psoriasis in the normal places. That struck me as odd.
And the skin around the spots (guttate) is hot and a little rough. And I noticed that when I wear tights or fitted jeans, my legs itch.
The penny finally dropped. So, I went to a Laundromat, washed sheets, and a pile of pants and tights—anything that was touching my inner legs. In WATER only. No laundry soap. And I wiped down the dryer with vinegar water to remove any residue of fabric softener. AND I bought an antihistamine (which is not supposed to help with psoriasis itching).
My thinking has changed from “this is a psoriasis flare caused by a dairy cheat” to “this is a psoriasis flare caused by an allergic reaction to a laundry soap”. You might remember that my original giant flare of 2014 was caused by a reaction to a laundry detergent. Duh!
I now believe that it’s not only what we consume (food/ beverages/ supplements) or take INTO our body that can cause a flare. But what we put ONTO our body. That includes lotions, potions, soap, detergents, etc.
Take a look at what products you use in your home. If you use fabric softener—stop! And I don’t care what percentage “natural” your laundry detergent is—it might just be causing your skin to keep getting worse. Find one that you don’t react to.
And it can’t hurt to try an antihistamine to see if that helps. If it does, you may be having an allergic reaction and no matter what psoriasis medication you use, it won’t work.
Anyway, things are looking a little better. I’ll keep you posted on my results.
Much love, Dakota and Lucky