Paige's Story

Paige has lived with psoriasis since she was 12. Now she's 18, she shares her story about how it impacts her life.

I’ve suffered with plaque psoriasis since I was about 12 years old. It used tomainly break out in my hairline and eyebrows, it was only small so I never really bothered too much. Last Christmas, I had a couple of patches appear on my torso, this was the first time they had ever broken out on my body, but I was prescribed Enstilar and luckily, they went pretty quickly. However, this April just gone, I had woken up one day and had several spots appear all over my stomach, they were itchy and even after a round of anti fungal antibiotics it had gotten so much worse and the spots kept multiplying. My mum panicked and thought they were measles, so we went to A&E. We waited a few hours and I was then diagnosed with guttate psoriasis which is a variant of psoriasis triggered by streptococcal bacteria. I have experienced recurrent throat infections every month this year, so this made a lot of sense, however they couldn’t prescribe any treatment.

Me and my mum tried everything we could. I sunbathed for 10 minutes everyday, changed my diet to dairy and gluten free, we tried acupuncture and Chinese medicine. I was taking 30+ tablets a day, drinks that made me physically ill, but nothing worked. I was miserable and I didn’t want to leave the house, I was so tired from not sleeping due to constant itching and pain, my only source of relief were my cold bathroom tiles. I would lie there crying until 5/6am every night and I can’t express how horrendous I felt in myself.

Being an 18 year old girl going out clubbing, to Ibiza etc, I did experience lots of stares, laughing, pointing. I even had someone come up and ask if it was contagious and if I had tried Sudocrem yet, as if I hadn’t tried every cream on the market. I had someone tell me I hadn’t fake tanned properly. I felt so self conscious and insecure and I would wear full bodysuits to work even in 20+ degree heat just so that no one would ask what it was.

It’s disappointing that not only me; but other psoriasis sufferers feel as if they should cover up, psoriasis is just the same as any other skin condition such as acne, eczema etc. It’s uncontrollable and people should be wise enough to understand and recognise that we can’t do anything about it even though we wish we could.

At the end of summer, I had a tonsillectomy and it had completely transformed my skin, I went from 90% covered from head to toe in red raw itchy scales to being almost patch free. I am so lucky to have come out the other side, but to anyone suffering from guttate psoriasis and you experience lots of throat infections, they may be linked.

Please spread love and awareness always! You will get through this.

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