YouTube’s video sharing platform houses more than one billion videos covering a multitude of topics. But if you’re hoping to find a treatment for psoriasis, you may want to think twice before hitting the “search” button. A new study suggests that people who follow the advice of these popular tutorials run the risk of worsening their condition.
MYTH: YouTube is a great place to find alternative psoriasis treatments.
BUSTED: The majority of psoriasis YouTube videos are classified by dermatologists as misleading or dangerous.
According to a scientific study conducted on the matter, YouTube actually contains MORE misleading and dangerous videos on psoriasis and its treatment than valuable ones. To be specific, 17.5% were considered dangerous, 45.5% were considered misleading and 32% were classified as useful.
Many of these misleading videos focus on alternative home therapies for psoriasis. Patients with psoriasis that is unresponsive to treatment may be tempted to turn to these videos, but our dermatologist, Dr. Stacy Smith, urges you to look for a different option. “Picking, scraping, testing home remedies - these are all things that will irritate your psoriasis even more and should be avoided. With that being said, I sympathize with my psoriasis patients. Leaving skin alone is easier said than done and this disease has a large emotional impact on people's lives. But DIY videos are just never the answer. Patients - if you feel like you want to try an alternative treatment, I encourage you to check in with your dermatologist first. They will know what has been tested and attempted in the past and hearing their feedback may save you additional pain and frustration down the line.”
So what’s the game plan for the future? Psoriasis associations, dermatologists, and health facilities need to take matters in to their own hands. The more valuable, reliable information available to counteract the bad, the better!
We’re starting now. Dr. Stacy Smith, our chief dermatologist, has been seeing psoriasis patients for more than 20 years. Here’s 6 top tips he wants you to know about the condition: