Another Doctors appointment, another few minutes of my life I’ll never get back. I swear I might as well talk to my Moomin pal instead of a Doctor…
He’s a good listener….
My skin has been really rubbish recently, not just because it looks bad but it FEELS different. I have Atopic Eczema, so of course I know already I react badly to pretty much anything and there’s no consistency. Recently, however, my skin is so itchy I literally want to make a bed out of really rough doormats and roll around naked in it to scratch all my skin off Something is really irritating me (besides the usual- work, rude people, lack of sun and shortage of Disney films in my life) and I want to get to the bottom of it. It must be horrific holding hands and sleeping next to a lizard every night!
I hate it when you go to see someone; a ‘professional’ and they try and pretend they know more about yourself than you. This time was a classic. I was the last patient of the day- and boy didn’t I know it! Couldn’t have been hurried through any faster if I’d tried! I had a Doctor I don’t normally have; clearly he hadn’t bothered to read any of my notes before the appointment. He looked at my skin and declared after about 2 seconds ‘you have chemical-related Eczema…’ RIGHT. Clearly no clue that I’ve had this condition since I was the size of a melon. He asked me what I did and then mentioned it must be my job. Erm… I film stuff and take photos. I haven’t been in a darkroom near chemicals since 2006. I spend a fortune on organic, natural skin care- of course it’s not chemical related.
When I suggested I might be allergic to something, or have developed a recently allergy, I was told that’s impossible. Apparently if you’re not allergic to something ten years ago you won’t be now. When I put forward we had a cat when I was younger but now when I’m in a room with one my eyes look like a Pugs after about two minutes I just got silence.
I read lots of Eczema sufferer’s blogs and take a keen interest in what other people do to help their skin, what they eat, their allergies and how they treat their skin. I’m trying to stay off Steroids and when I suggested to Dr. Personality about maybe seeing an Allergist or getting a test to see if there was anything I might be allergic to that I’m in regular contact with I was greeted with a look like I’d just informed him they were going to have to pay for their own drinks at the Doctors Christmas do.
Anyone that knows me knows I’m the most awkward person when it comes to talking about my skin. I can talk about Eczema until the cows come home (I have literally no idea where that saying comes from) but when it comes to my own shizzle I get all panicky and upset. I hate going to the Doctors let alone having to stand up for myself and talk about something I find really difficult. I hate the way I was made to feel stupid just because I asked whether I might be eating/doing something that has affected my skin and actually asking questions and making suggestions. How can you convey to someone who has never wanted to rip their own hands off what it’s like? They just don’t get it. After an Oscar worthy meltdown and floods of tears I have now been palmed off to a new Dermatologist and informed on my way out that I ‘read too much on the internet’.
I left the appointment more angry than satisfied. Fair enough it’s the NHS and it’s not like I’ve paid a private professional to give a shit about me, however my pay slip would dispute this and it would be nice from time to time to see someone who does care, or at least pretends to. I’ve had to suffer from this my whole life, you can suffer with my crap for ten minutes. I sincerely doubt any medical professional will take on what I say, which makes me sad. I KNOW my own skin more than you do. I know that in the last month my Eczema is worse than it’s been in years and that there is something making me claw my own skin to shreds in my sleep. I know it’s a cycle but surely at some point there’s something I can do to break it? I know I’m allergic to hay (which sucks when you have a horse) but I’ve dealt with this and I know that if my skin is bad after a trip to the yard this is why. This is different though.
Think I’m going to go back to the drawing board. I’m convinced that changing my diet will help. I do try and eat well but sometimes I am a bit lapse with food. After reading The Eczema Diet last year I know there’s a lot I can do to help. At least if I’m making an effort to heal my skin from the inside out it won’t matter that I read a lot online because when I do see these ‘caring professionals’ I know I’m doing all I can to help myself along the way.
Happy scratching…. x