Approximately 2% of the U.S. population deals with psoriasis. Some people have more severe cases than others, but it almost always becomes problematic when you face certain triggers that cause your condition to flare up.
For people with this skin condition, going on a summer vacation can feel overwhelming. The last thing you want is to experience a rash or itchy, painful skin when you’re planning and preparing to enjoy some downtime on a trip with family, friends, or even solo.
Luckily, it’s possible to avoid psoriasis triggers on summer vacation .
It starts with reducing your stressors.
Let’s take a closer look at how you can counteract some of the stress that comes with preparing for a vacation — and how you can make the most of your time away to unwind without worrying about your skin condition.
Vacations are supposed to be relaxing. Unfortunately, they can quickly become stressful if you try to do things at the last minute or you’re not fully prepared for your trip.
That kind of stress can cause your condition to flare up and contribute to a vicious cycle of stress. The more irritated your skin is, the more stressed you may become.
One of the best ways to combat that stress is to plan and prepare ahead of time. If you know you want to take a vacation, start planning for it weeks — or, depending on the length of your trip, even months — in advance.
Consider things like:
- Modes of transportation;
- Things to do;
- Where to go;
- With whom you want to travel.
Your goal should be to make travel as comfortable as possible. Pack clothes that can be mixed and matched, as well as plenty of toiletries, medications, and anything else you’ll need to maintain a healthy routine while you’re away.
It’s also a good idea to practice some relaxation techniques now that you can use throughout the planning process and on your trip.
Things like mindfulness, meditation, and deep-breathing exercises are all great ways to reduce stress.
You can also implement them any time you’re feeling overwhelmed.
Practice Self-Care Outdoors
Spending time in nature is one of the best ways to alleviate stress. Being outside can boost your energy, improve your focus, and make you feel happier and more relaxed.
Summer is a great time to be outside, especially when you decide to travel somewhere warm. After all, who doesn’t love lounging on a beach in the summer sun?
Spending time in nature is good for your mental and physical health, no matter what you decide to do. However, if you’re taking a vacation with the goal of de-stressing and finding more relaxation, be sure to practice self-care while you’re away.
Self-care looks different for everyone. You can combine it with your outdoor excursions by trying things like reading a good book on the beach or staying physically active by hiking, kayaking, or cycling.
Even enjoying a healthy meal while looking out at a beautiful view can reduce your stress levels and allow you to feel like the best version of yourself.
Protect Your Skin From Sun
The sun has plenty of benefits. It’s an excellent source of Vitamin D, which helps with things like:
- Strengthened immune system;
- Calcium absorption;
- Improved mood;
- Weight loss;
- Reduced risk of diabetes;
- Reduced risk of heart disease;
- Lower blood pressure.
However, it’s important to keep yourself — and your skin — protected from the sun, especially when you have psoriasis. Wearing comfortable, loose-fitting clothing and packing layers is a great start, but you may run into different kinds of weather during your travels.
With that in mind, it’s necessary to know how to keep your skin safe.
The easiest way to protect your skin is to wear sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15. Keep your summer skincare routine at the top of your priority list by packing everything you’ll need to keep yourself healthy and glowing.
That typically includes a cleanser, retinol, and exfoliant, but be sure to follow whatever routine works well for you and your skin.
Also, bring plenty of gear that will physically shade you from the sun. Wide-brimmed hats, canopies, travel chairs, and other shaded items will help to keep your skin protected from the sun’s rays.
Don’t Let Psoriasis Hold You Back
Finally, don’t fear the sun. Just because you’re dealing with psoriasis doesn’t mean you need to avoid the wonderful warmth summer has to offer.
Some physicians believe that the sun can benefit those with psoriasis, including reducing scaling and decreasing inflammation.
However, if you have a high risk for skin cancer or you’re sensitive to UV rays, you might want to consider phototherapy instead. It’s a great way to minimize the risks and maximize the advantages of sun exposure in a controlled environment.
By taking the proper precautions, finding ways to manage your stress, and protecting your skin, you can enjoy your summer vacation without having to worry about psoriasis triggers.
You know your body better than anyone, and you have the best understanding of what contributes to flare-ups.
Do what you can to get ahead of stress when it comes to your trip, and you’ll be able to make the most of it while staying healthy, happy, and relaxed.