Most psoriasis sufferers will be aware of the beneficial effects of sunshine. More accurately, it is the UV rays that have an effect – specifically UVB medium wave ultraviolet light.
I certainly do find my skin to be far worse during the winter months, and can see a remarkable change in just a couple of days when I escape the foul English summer weather for a holiday in the Mediterranean. Of course – the fact that I am not at work, have no washing up, laundry or cleaning to do, and no pressures other that deciding which sun lounger to sit on, might well have beneficial impact, as well.
Knowing that UV rays improve my skin condition, I requested that my dermatologist refer me for some UV-B light therapy. Sadly, they refused to do so. Although I knew full well that the severity of my psoriasis warranted it, I imagine that the cost was prohibitive. If I had some money lying around I might have plumped for some private care, but the term ‘spare cash’ is not something I am able to say most of the time. Anyway – I didn’t push the matter, partly because I would feel somewhat uncomfortable wandering around the hospital wearing nothing but some disposable paper underwear.
Medical UV lamps for use at home
After some research, I purchased a home-use UVB light emitter.
This Androv Medical Dermfix 1000MX UVB Lamp was well priced, and the kit included the light itself and a number of accessories, including a timer, treatment schedule and combs to use on your hair when treating your scalp.
Use with caution
Before I go further, a word of warning. Just as most psoriasis sufferers are aware of the beneficial effects of sunshine, so they should be aware of the dangers. Too much sun is far worse than none at all. Getting a sunburn – even a mild one - on your psoriasis can make matters much worse, and is quite painful. Well – the exact same thing is true for a handheld medical appliance of this type, and great care must be taken not to over-treat any area of your skin.
This happened to me, when I got distracted by a random phone call and accidentally treated the same area twice. Not cool. Literally.
But with care, and using the time and treatment plan accurately, this can show some promising results.
Take your time
This can be a time consuming process and you should set aside some enough time with no disturbances. You also need to be very organized, to ensure that you treat each area for the right duration and intensity to avoid the mistake that I made.
- Take it seriously. It does feel a bit strange, as you are basically just shining a light on yourself. But this is not a toy, and you can cause lasting skin damage if you use it improperly.
- Be organised. Keep an accurate record of the areas that you have treated, and for how long.
- Adjust the duration according to your own skin. Everyone is different. Whatever the instruction s say for appropriate duration – start a little lower, and build up to it – to ensure that you don’t burn yourself.
- Moisturise before and after use. A normal over the counter moisturisers, like a simple E45 cream, should be used. Definitely moisturise after treatment, but you can use it before you begin as well.
It’s not a quick fix.
This is not going to work overnight, and it takes regular, careful repetition in order to see good results. But if you stick with it and do so carefully, I believe that you can go a long way to reducing the psoriasis scales and redness.
Now you have read this - why not take a look at my recent blog posts?
31st August 2018