Two women with psoriasis have revealed the devastating impact that the skin condition has on their daily lives.
New research, conducted by the Wake Up to Psoriasis report, found that more than 40 percent of people with psoriasis – an immune disorder that red, flaky spots on the skin – experience regular sleep disturbance, with many losing eyes closed for two weeks a month.
Exclusive to FEMAIL, Poppy Challinor, 23, from Cheltenham, whose condition covers more than 90 percent of her body, including her face and scalp, told how she often wakes up with bleeding arms after itching during the night.
Meanwhile, Judith Duncan, 26, from Glasgow, who was initially mistakenly diagnosed three times by her doctor, remembers a time when she was working when a client told her not to be there because she wasn't beautiful enough & # 39 ;.
Poppy Challinor (photo), 23, from Cheltenham, told how at various stages of her life the skin condition has covered more than 90% of her body, including her face and scalp
The photographer (photo) admitted that psoriasis disrupts her sleep pattern, making her feel physically tired, mentally exhausted and out of focus for the rest of the day
Speaking of how the condition affects her sleeping habits, Poppy said: & # 39; I would wake up because my arm is bleeding, because I scratched it in my sleep. & # 39; Pictured, her legs after taking blood
Poppy Challinor, 23, from Cheltenham, first noticed psoriasis behind her ears and on her scalp when she was 13, before slowly slipping over her forehead, around her eyes, and on her back.
She became very self-aware, especially at school, and tried to avoid certain social situations. The photographer was also concerned about which clothing to wear – and made sure that outfits that exposed her skin were avoided.
It was only when she turned 18, where the red, flaky spots covered most of her body, that Poppy went to the doctor – where she was immediately diagnosed with psoriasis while the disease was in her family.
& # 39; I remember my dermatologist saying to me, "No one should live like that." At the time, my psoriasis covered more than 90% of my body. It was so, so bad, & she explained.
The 23-year-old told how she first noticed psoriasis behind her ears and on her scalp when she was 13
The photographer (photo) was immediately diagnosed at the age of 18, because the condition occurs in her family
When she suffered from psoriasis during her teenage years, Poppy (photo with the condition on her back) was worried about which clothes to wear and deliberately avoided outfits that exposed her skin
When the photographer went to college, about 40-50 percent of her body was covered – and she was worried that her new condition would be thrown away by her skin condition & # 39;
WHAT IS PSORIASIS?
Psoriasis is an immune disorder that occurs when the skin cells of a patient are replaced in just a few days instead of the usual 21 to 28 days.
This causes an accumulation of skin cells that accumulate to form elevated plaques, which can be flaky, flaky, red and itchy.
Some patients have a family history of the condition.
Triggers for flare-ups are stress, certain medication, hormonal changes and skin damage.
There is no medicine.
Treatment usually starts with topical creams and gels.
Source: Psoriasis Association
& # 39; Trying to make a good impression on new people with whom you will have to spend three years was really daunting & # 39 ;, she said.
& # 39; I remember spending the night before a university deadline and then my skin was so bad. & # 39;
& # 39; Finally I went back to my dermatologist because the psoriasis was all around me and I couldn't do anything to treat it. & # 39;
Poppy also explained how the disorder disrupts her sleep pattern, making her feel physically tired, mentally exhausted and lacking focus for the rest of the day.
& # 39; When I am in bed, my skin feels a thousand times more itchy, & # 39; she explained. & # 39; I usually wake up and have plaques in my hair from where itching in my sleep. & # 39;
& # 39; Sometimes I wake up while my arm is bleeding because I scratched it in my sleep. And then I will have the same issue about trying to fall asleep because everything is itchy. & # 39;
She added: & # 39; I have become so used to two spots on my arms that it has now almost become a consolation. & # 39;
Poppy explained how she & # 39; itch a thousand times & # 39; feels like she is in her bed. In the photo she can wake up to find plaques in her hair
Poppy explained how when she started college, psoriasis covered about 40-50% of her body, worrying that her new college friends were extrapolated & # 39; would be due to her skin condition
And she also said how the physical consequences of a bad night's sleep are also felt the next day.
& # 39; The day after a bad night's sleep, I am & # 39; a little grimmer in the morning, & she explained. & # 39; It changes my mental state. & # 39;
& # 39; And if I have itched all night, then I will itch more the next day and therefore lose my focus. & # 39;
Poppy has also praised her doctor for understanding the relationship between the physical and emotional impact of psoriasis.
& # 39; My doctor is incredible, & # 39; she explained. & # 39; Every time I go to visit her, she asks about my mental well-being and my skin, and whether the two bounce off each other, & # 39; Poppy explained.
Poppy (photo) remembered a time when she spent a night before a university deadline, causing her psoriasis to flare up
Poppy (photo) has praised her doctor for understanding the relationship between the physical and emotional impact of psoriasis
Judith Duncan, 26, from Glasgow, had a long journey before being diagnosed with plaque psoriasis, after having been wrongly diagnosed three times by her doctor.
The marketing officer explained how she first noticed the symptoms when she was a 20-year university student.
She was previously diagnosed with impetigo and chickenpox, and both she and her doctor believed that redness and blemishes on her skin were due to another skin infection.
But the itchy, red spots (plaques) on her scalp, face and body continued to deteriorate over time.
Judith Duncan (photo), 26, from Glasgow, was incorrectly diagnosed three times by her doctor before confirming that she has plaque psoriasis
The marketing employee (photo) first noticed the symptoms of the skin condition when she was a 20-year university student
& # 39; That year was tough, & # 39; she explained. & # 39; I spent a lot of time going back and forth to my doctor and never got an accurate diagnosis. & # 39;
Once she was referred to the hospital's dermatology team, a year after her symptoms first appeared, Judith was diagnosed with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis – and treatment began immediately.
& # 39; My doctor did not really understand what was happening to my skin, making me feel angry and worried & # 39 ;, she explained.
& # 39; Although it took a long time, referral to the dermatologist was the best thing to do, because together we could discuss my psoriasis in detail, and more importantly, he could advise on the best treatment plan for me. & # 39;
But like many people living with psoriasis, Judith says it is the itching and irritation of the skin that makes her sleep.
& # 39; Often I am & # 39; I woke up at night and had to put a cold flannel on my back to cool down and calm my skin, & she explained.
The 26-year-old was previously diagnosed with impetigo and chickenpox and so both she and her doctor initially thought that the redness and spots on her skin were due to another skin infection
Judith (photo) told how she often scratches without realizing it, causing her skin to bleed and become very painful
& # 39; What's worse is that I scratch without realizing it, causing my skin to bleed and become very sore. This not only affects me, but also interrupts my partner's sleep. & # 39;
Regarding the emotional impact of psoriasis, Judith added: & I try to be cheerful, but there are times when I cry and feel anxious about my skin. & # 39;
& # 39; There is one incident I will never forget, which makes me realize that part of the problem with psoriasis is the reaction and attitude of other people. & # 39;
& # 39; I was working in a store and a woman told me I wasn't beautiful enough and shouldn't be there. It was such a hurtful, negative comment. & # 39;
Despite the diagnosis and management of depression, Judith is generally a very positive person and life with psoriasis has opened a new world for her.
& # 39; I started my own blog so that I can share my experiences with other people with psoriasis, not only in the UK, but also worldwide &, "she said.
Judith (photo) said she remains optimistic for the future and even started her own blog so she can share her experiences with other people with psoriasis
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