Now, I won’t sit here and type out lies to you, my friend. My scalp psoriasis is not cured. Nor is it possible to cure scalp psoriasis.
Psoriasis an autoimmune condition that reveals itself through different, individual triggers. The flare-ups could be evoked through varying factors like diet, stress, allergies, medications, and even weather.
I remember feeling so discouraged because I would come across blogs that recommended going vegan to treat the condition. *eyes roll to the back of my head* I’ve already been vegan for close to 10 years.
Then there would be recommendations to quit smoking and drinking. I don’t do any of that either.
Some other blogs even suggested going gluten-free. Alas, I eliminated gluten from my diet for 3 months and purchased gluten-free shampoos and conditioners. No success. I reintroduced gluten back into my diet and my body reacted by doing… nothing.
So, after an honest examination of my life and a good hard look in the mirror, I had figured out the culprit. My trigger is STRESS. Yes, stress. Satan’s baby sister.
After a very difficult 2 years, my body had decided to set my scalp on fire and teach me a valuable lesson of calming the heck down.
The process of relieving stress was much easier said than done, however. One workout and one bath wasn’t going to solve everything. It took time. And in the meantime, it was important for me to keep my scalp psoriasis under control until I achieved peace.
This is a good lesson for anyone who lives with scalp psoriasis. No matter what evokes your condition, it will take time before it can begin getting and feeling better. It won’t happen overnight. So, while you figure out the root cause of it all, take the steps to actually begin treating the itchiness and flaking.
And don’t be afraid to try different things! Try going vegan. Try going alcohol and smoke free. Try quitting gluten. Just because these things weren’t applicable to my condition, doesn’t mean they won’t work for you. Everyone is different and I encourage you to find your trigger, so you can better understand what’s working for your body and what’s working against it.
I would also like to mention that I also won’t sit here and lie to you about how I suffered through the most gruesome, severe form of psoriasis ever. Mine is mild to moderate. It didn’t look like the Google Images you see when you search up scalp psoriasis. My hair wasn’t falling out. And it didn’t cause me to stay awake at night. But it was irritating and itchy and scaly and everything that’s uncomfortable, formed into one mean, relentless pain in the backside called scalp psoriasis.
With that being said, I hope the steps I have taken and listed below bring you the same (or at least some) relief they have brought me.
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I Consumed Probiotics Like It Was My Frickin’ Job
When you have psoriasis, your immune system is weakened. T cells aren’t able to recognize the good from the bad and begin an inflammatory attack against your healthy skin, as if they’re trying to heal a wound or infection.
So what do probiotics have to do with psoriasis? Well…
Probiotics are essential for gut health.
Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition.
80% of your immune system is in your gut.
See how those add up? The probiotics are able to correct abnormal immune responses and keep bad bacteria from getting to harmful levels.
The one I consumed was the Bio-K+ organic brown rice drink in the flavour blueberry. I started off by drinking one bottle every day for 30 days, then reduced it to 1/2 a bottle for another month, and now I only consume 1/4 of the bottle every day to maintain healthy intestinal flora.
All probiotics are not made the same, so make sure to do your research! The last thing you want to do is purchase some expensive probiotics and have them be filled with dead bacteria. Some criteria to look for in a probiotic is double checking to see if the product is GMO free, ensuring that the bacteria hasn’t been compromised whilst have been converted to powder form, and researching online to see if clinical studies on the final product have been published.
Apple Cider Vinegar + Neem Oil
Apple cider vinegar is filled with antiseptic properties and regulates pH levels on the skin. Neem oil is a natural pain killer and fights the microbes that settle into scratched skin, by disinfecting the area and allowing the skin to heal from inflammation.
The two of them together? The best!
I recommend purchasing a raw, organic apple cider vinegar with the “mother” and a high quality, organic neem oil to reap the full benefits of these two.
I place 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, 2 tablespoons of purified water, and 10 drops of neem oil into a bowl. I then use a small, clean makeup sponge to dab the mixture all over my scalp. I let it sit on my scalp for 30 minutes and then proceed to rinse it out with my shampoo.
Note: Do not use this if your scalp has been bleeding, it’ll burn!
Herbal Glo Psoriasis Shampoo
This product has been a lifesaver for me. I have used harsh, chemical-ridden shampoos out of utter desperation and they would (at best) relieve my symptoms for a day or two. With my hair type, I only need to wash it once a week, so that wasn’t going to work for me. I came across Herbal Glo Psoriasis shampoo and it has been a game changer. It relieves my symptoms immediately after use and I can go throughout the week without experiencing any itchiness.
This product is vegan, cruelty-free, and labeled as natural. However, some of the complexly-named natural ingredients listed can make you raise an eyebrow. Here’s the breakdown:
Sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate —
Despite its name, this is not a sulfate. It is used to clean the hair and skin by aiding water to mix with oil and dirt, so that they are able to wash away with ease. According to Environment Canada’s website, this ingredient has been observed to have an effect on development in some lab studies.
Decal Polyglucose —
This is a foam booster. It’s obtained from renewable vegetable origin and is non-carcinogenic, non-drying, and non-toxic. This fella shouldn’t be of any concern.
Cocomidopropyl Betaine —
Another foam booster and another not so great ingredient. Although this is derived from coconut oil, it has been associated with skin irritations and rashes (which is ironic because that’s exactly what scalp psoriasis sufferers want to avoid).
Polysorbate 80 —
This ingredient is used to make products appear creamier and is used as a surfactant. It has been linked to irritation.
If your scalp psoriasis is severe or you have very sensitive skin, this shampoo may not work for you as it still contains some potentially irritating ingredients. Don’t let me scare you off though, this product isn’t all bad. Some of the impressive ingredients in this shampoo are:
Salicylic Acid ¸—
Helps shed dead skin cells and reduces inflammation in congested tissue.
Juniper Berry Extract —
Restores the normal oil balance of the scalp.
Tea Tree Oil —
Removes dead skin and promotes healthy hair growth.
Neem Oil —
Contains anti-fungal, antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory properties.
Willow Herb Extract —
Thyme Extract —
Now, I realize that there are a few ingredients in here that can make you uneasy, but comparing it to other commercial psoriasis shampoos with big-time toxic ingredients such as sodium laureth sulfate, tetrasodium EDTA, and DMDM hydantoin — I will definitely take this deal over the other.
I have also heard good things about Dr. Bronner’s Pure Castile Unscented Liquid as a shampoo for scalp psoriasis sufferers, though I haven’t personally used it (thus have no comments toward its viability).
I hope that was helpful for many of you. If you have any questions, please feel free to comment down below and I’ll do my best to get back to you.
Love and light,