Senior Citizen Story

I am female senior citizen, age 69, and only developed psoriasis some 12 years ago. It was over my entire body except the palms of my hands and soles of my feet. The itching and lesions were torturing, especially at night. Because I have a compromised immune system, I can’t take the pills or shots so have to rely on creams and light therapy. Twice I have gone into remission but the psoriasis is back now.

I also have psoriatic arthritis along with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. Right now I have a flare-up of psoriatic arthritis in my left ankle that is causing swelling, redness and lots of pain. I was told to stay off my feet, but sitting around isn’t good for me so I’m trying to strike a balance.

A few years ago I decided that I was no longer going to cover my arms and legs. This is who I am. It has been surprising and gratifying that people have come up to me and asked if I have psoriasis, then share their own stories.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The Psoriatic-Arthritis.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Comments

View Comments (6)
  • PattyJ
    2 years ago

    Hi Jude,

    I have had psoriasis on up to 96% of my body and know what you are going through. I have used antihistamines when the itching was so bad I could not sleep. I also got in a warm shower that I then turned as cold as I could stand for a moment. It shocks the nerve ending enough to lessen the itching and allowed me to get back to sleep. Light therapy did not help me at all. So sorry you can’t take the shots, pills, or IV’s. They can make all the difference. Keep asking your doctor about new options as they are developing new treatments all the time. I know at times I didn’t even feel human. What a treasure it is in life to find people who can look beyond that and see you and not just your skin. I’m glad you have reached a place to accept it and still try to live your life and ignore the ignorant. Be encouraged that it can go in remission on it’s own. Some people find modifying their diet helps. Over the years mine has changed many times.

  • Jude author
    2 years ago

    Thank you so much for your reply. I cannot imagine having psoriasis on 96% of my body but can identify with the itching at night. Seems like the itching is always worse at night. I have never been able to stand under a cold shower, but who knows what desperation could do. I suppose my age has something to do with my decision to not cover the lesions, and I was so surprised that people approached me rather than approached me. I wish advertisers would change the negative ads for psoriasis treatments. Complete remission has happened a couple of times with me. Right now I don’t have many lesions but a few scattered ones pop up every week. The cream I use works fairly well.

  • VickiN moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi Jude!
    Thank you so much for sharing your story with us. I work in a pathogen laboratory so I also can’t take any systemics or biologics, I rely on creams and light therapy as well. Now that the cold weather is coming in Canada, my skin is doing its yearly flare up (it could really use some anger management!).

    I’m glad that you’ve come to a confidence and acceptance in your skin, and that people feel comfortable opening up to you and sharing their stories!

    Wishing you all the best,
    VickiN

  • Jude author
    2 years ago

    Thanks for your response. I live in New England, but find that the warmer weather aggravates the psoriasis more. I use more moisturizers to combat dry skin in the winter. My NP suggested coconut oil; I also use almond oil.

  • CathyD moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi Jude,

    I am sorry to hear of your struggles – I hope your ankle calms down soon and you can get some relief. Meeting others with psoriasis is so lovely isn’t it? It’s like you immediately feel a special bond with them as we know what the other has been through.

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. Great to have you here!
    – Cathy

  • Jude author
    2 years ago

    Thanks, Cathy. After two rounds of prednisone and staying off my feet for a week (mostly!) my ankle greatly improved a lot. Still bothers me now and then. Meeting others with psoriasis has been great, and so reassuring. I’m glad I decided to uncover the lesions and other folks’ reactions would be their issues, not mine. It was so freeing and so educational!

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