Each human being needs a healthy and full sleep. But if you suffer from psoriasis, you can face certain difficulties sleeping at night. Hence, psoriasis and sleep issues. Let’s look the truth in the eyes: psoriasis can affect your sleep. Scratching your skin in sleep can may trigger spreading of the disease over the whole body of the patient (Kebner phenomenon) thereby aggravating their condition. Besides, lack of sleep as well as restless sleep hinders proper nervous system functioning. Such a stress triggers psoriasis exacerbation. This is why patients often get into a vicious circle, that is, the more severe psoriasis form is along with bad sleep, the more complications of psoriasis there are. Despite there’s no answer for the question: “How to cure psoriasis?”, there are methods that can alleviate the course of the disease, including that in your sleep.
The negative factors accompanying psoriasis and sleep in particular, itching are also active at night as well as during the day. Sleep is a process where self-control is largely reduced. Thus, you can not protect yourself from scratching itchy skin areas, as possible during wakefulness. This leads to plaque damaging which can cause minor bleeding and the emergence of new areas of inflammation. In addition, blood can stain your sheets and clothes.
Many studies have been conducted to help identify possible problems associated with psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis and sleep quality. People suffering from psoriasis should pay attention to the following symptoms: problems with falling asleep and sleeping, waking at night, daytime fatigue, restless leg syndrome, snoring, shortness of breath, a lack of air. All of them can indicate sleep apnea. It is a type of sleep disorder characterized by pauses in breathing, as well as cases of weak or delayed breathing during sleep. According to the statistics, 36-46.3% of patients with psoriasis suffer from apnea. This disease can be the cause of poor sleep.
Many scientists have found a connection between sleep disorder and depression. The latter can be caused by a number of factors, including a disease like psoriasis. If you have a depressive condition, this can be the real cause of your sleeping problems. Observe how you feel day by day. If there is a need to make an appointment with a therapist to understand what caused your negative emotional state.
Lack of sleep is directly associated with psoriasis outbreaks as well as the deterioration of the general body condition. And vice versa, a full sleep helps restore strength and positively influences the therapy of the disease. Below, there are a few simple things that will make your sleep better.
Observe your sleep regimen
You need to stick to sleep schedule even on weekends. Doctors recommend going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, including Saturdays and Sundays. This helps to adjust the work of your biological clock to your regimen.
Try not to sleep during the day. If you feel an unrestrained need to take a nap during the day, it is important that the sleep is short ( half an hour or an hour). Also avoid taking a nap at the time close to when you usually go to sleep.
Prepare a place for a sleep
1) Make sure there is the right air temperature in your bedroom. Many dermatologists believe that sleep is better if the room is a bit cool, rather than premises where the temperature is higher than normal. It is advisable to ventilate the bedroom before bedtime. Fresh air improves sleep.
2) Use curtains or blinds to make the room dark. Light reduces the level of melatonin, which makes your sleep better. When it’s dark, the skin produces more melatonin and it helps you sleep better.
3) Ensure your bed is comfortable, and that the bedding and sleepwear are clean. Avoid washing your bedding with detergents that can cause skin irritation.
4) To fight insomnia, unplug all electronic devices or leave them somewhere else the apartment. If you are very sensitive to sounds, use earbuds for sleep.
Keep moisturizers next to your bed. If you wake up at night from itching, you can apply a cream to damaged areas.
Before going to sleep it will be helpful to take a bath which will make you less troubled about psoriasis and sleep. This is a good way to calm down, relax and pamper yourself. The water should be warm or cool, but in no case hot. The optimum temperature is from 33 to 37.5 degrees.
One can add oatmeal or herbal decoction (daisies, sage, coldsfoot, herds and others) to bath. The time for such water procedures is limited and should not exceed 30 minutes. One should take an herbal bath 3 times a week, it is possible to do this more often.
Moisturizing and protecting
Regular skin care, along with gentle cleansing and regular moisturizing helps relieve itching. Maintaining the hydration of your skin will significantly reduce some of the symptoms of the disease. It is important to choose high-quality moisturizers without additives and flavors. Moisturizing cream should be applied to the skin immediately after shower or bath.
Take breathing exercises
If you often wake up at night, you can sleep hard or you can not sleep at all, try using relaxation techniques. Breathing practices, along with meditation have helped many people.
To stabilize your breathing before going to sleep, you can try a simple exercise. Slowly take a deep breath, counting from 1 to 10. Hold your breath for a few seconds, then slowly exhale, counting from 10 to 1. Repeat this breathing exercise at least five times to feel more relaxed.
Unload your head
If anxiety keeps you awake, it's important to get rid of unnecessary thoughts and worries. This will make it easier to fall asleep and help you sleep. If it's very difficult for you to do, dedicate 20-30 minutes of your time and write a list of all your problems and unresolved issues. So you can free your mind from anxiety. And the next day, find the right ways to solve some of them.
If you continue to feel anxiety and suffer from depression, you should contact a specialist for help. The psychotherapist can give you the necessary recommendations.
Studies show that exercising, especially in the open air can help fight insomnia. Talk to the dermatologist before starting any exercise program. It can be aerobics, athletic walking, running, swimming or cycling. As soon as your physician approves the chosen system of exercises, work on a regularity that implies at least 30 minutes of activity five times a week.
Some doctors recommend that people suffering from psoriasis should include a 15-minute stretch exercises. The main thing is not to engage in physical activity too close to sleep - it can lead to problems with sleep and worsen the process of falling asleep.
In addition to relaxing baths, yoga or meditation, there are other ways that you can relax before going to bed. You can drink a cup of warm herbal tea, listen to soothing music or read a good book. However, there are warnings: if you drink tea to relax in the evening, do not do it too close to sleep, otherwise your sleep is at risk of being disturbed not by psoriasis, but by the need to go to the toilet.
Cotton clothes to sleep in
Dermatologists recommend choosing soft cotton clothes to sleep in. Cotton does not rub the skin and does not irritate the affected areas. Synthetic and non-natural tissues can provoke itching and cause painful sensations that can wake you up and make it difficult to fall asleep. Besides, cotton is the most breathable cloth and helps maintain optimal body temperature during sleep.
Do not abuse alcohol and food
Drinking alcohol can disrupt your sleep, especially if you are drinking shortly before bedtime. Therefore, you should drink water or tea. Do not eat hard to digest food, and avoid large portions before going to bed. Undigested food makes it difficult to fall asleep, especially if you have consumed foods that contain a lot of sugar. On the other hand, do not go to sleep on an empty stomach. You can wake up at night from feeling hungry. Try to avoid coffee and foods that contain caffeine in the afternoon.
There are many reasons why people suffering from psoriasis should not smoke and why smoking makes the problem of psoriasis and sleep more disturbing. In addition to the obvious risks of cancer and cardiovascular disease, smoking can worsen your psoriasis. It can also worsen your sleep, especially if you smoke in the evening.
Сomplex treatment of psoriasis may often include taking antihistamines. Some antihistamines have a calming effect and contribute to falling asleep. But before taking these drugs, be sure to consult your doctor.
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