Click here for COVID-19 (coronavirus) advice for people living with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.
Emma was worried about the support that would be available for her psoriatic arthritis and psoriasis throughout lockdown. Here she talks about the ups and downs of life during the pandemic and why she took the PsoProtectMe survey.
I was incredibly concerned for my health at the start of lockdown, not only mentally but also physically. In February 2020 I had started my Methotrexate treatment as I’d recently been diagnosed with Psoriatic Arthritis. I was starting to get into a good routine with exercise, healthy eating and attending all hospital and doctor’s appointments, so once lockdown had been confirmed I feared the worst.
I didn’t know if I could still get my fortnightly blood tests, I didn’t know how easy it would be to access my medication and on top of that I was aware that the medication I was now taking is a immunosuppressant which put me at higher risk of catching Covid-19.
Despite a few tough weeks with my mental health declining rapidly and my skin flaring very quickly, a result of stress, poor diet and lack of exercise, I managed to bounce back. I changed my way of thinking, started to look after my body by doing any exercise I could from home and keeping an eye on my mental wellbeing.
Not only this but I have been extremely fortunate with the continued support I have received from medical professionals, especially my Rheumatology team. They have kept in contact through monthly calls and raised any concerns immediately with my GP. The other day they managed to arrange an appointment with Physio, and I am now starting treatment in a few weeks (via video appointments).
Although my joints seem to be increasing in pain and inflammation my skin has really started to clear, so I have hope and Rheumatology are considering moving me on to injections in the hopes it will improve my Arthritis.
It’s not been easy, but I feel very fortunate and am grateful to so many people for the support I have received, including PsoProtectMe who have enabled me to share my experience which in turn will hopefully help many others. Their work has also helped me to connect with others diagnosed with Psoriatic Disease which really helps reduce that lonely feeling during such a surreal and uncertain time.
If you'd like to help support vital research into COVID-19 and psoriasis please take the PsoProtectMe survey. The survey is for everyone with psoriasis to complete, irrespective of whether you have had symptoms of COVID-19 or not.