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The COVID-19 virus has been impacting lives, and it is a cause for concern especially for those already dealing with chronic conditions like Psoriasis. Many unknowns surround the COVID-19 virus, many questions are being asked but very few answers are available. Every day scientists and researchers all over the world are working towards finding better treatment options and developing preventive vaccines.
Meanwhile in these trying times, here are 3 tips to be COVID-19 wise!
Everyone with a chronic condition is at risk of getting infected. However, you can further lower your risk by following safety measures as suggested by the World Health Organisation (WHO):
Practice social distancing
Wear a mask in public places
Practice frequent hand washing and sanitisation
You may be considered as ‘High Risk’if you are:
More than 60 years of age
You have other chronic co-morbid conditions like diabetes, heart problems, high blood pressure, liver, kidney or respiratory disease
There is no definite evidence to suggest that people with Psoriasis are more likely to contract COVID-19.
Your doctor will be the best judge to decide the risk or benefit of therapy continuation.International Guidelines like the National Psoriasis Foundation and American Academy of Dermatology have listed the following recommendations for those under treatment for Psoriasis:
Talk to your Dermatologist before making any changes to your prescribed treatment
Studies have shown that increased stress levels could worsen Psoriasis symptoms. On the other hand, interruption of treatment can lead to severe flares or recurrence of symptoms.  Another, often overlooked point is that there would be a decreased response to medications once treatment is stopped and restarted.
The impact of COVID-19 pandemic fear on your symptoms 
It is important that you regularly keep in touch with your Dermatologist using video based or tele-calling applications.
Your discussion can be based on:
Current disease activity
Let your Dermatologist know if your symptoms have become severe or worsened.
Be sure to discuss the risks and benefits of your current treatment. Your Dermatologist will address all your concerns regarding therapy.
Ensuring continual treatment
Your Dermatologist will help you to schedule an appointment based on your current symptoms, your ongoing treatment and the availability of appointment slots.
We are living in changing times, which is undoubtedly stressful for both you and your family. It is upto you to make your health a priority by knowing your risk, understanding your treatment options and having a frank conversation with your Dermatologist about your condition.
Know more about how to make the most of your upcoming visit to the Dermatologist while adhering to the ‘new’ protocols.
National Psoriasis Foundation. NPF Forms COVID-19 Task Force. Available [Online] at: https://www.psoriasis.org/advance/coronavirus Accessed on 26 June 2020.
Amerio P, et al. DOI: 10.1111/dth.13434.
American Academy of Dermatology Association. Guidance on the use of immunosuppressive agents. Available [Online] at: https://www.aad.org/member/practice/coronavirus/clinical-guidance/biologics Accessed on 25 June 2020.
Chat V, et al. Journal of Dermatological Treatment, DOI: 10.1080/09546634.2020.1781045.
Ceribelli A, et al. Journal of Autoimmunity 2020;109:102442. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaut.2020.102442.
Colleto LA, et al. Dermatologic Therapy. 2020;e13415.