Tips for Better Handling HS Flare-Ups

When you have HS or hidradenitis suppurativa there are three stages that it can fall under. Mild symptoms for stage one, more moderate symptoms for stage two and then into the severe symptoms for stage three. Just as with other chronic skin conditions you can go through stretches of minimal issues, and then enter periods that can be short or long, of more frequent and problematic symptoms. People with HS have to learn to live with and manage this condition until a cure is discovered. Part of that is medical support and treatment to help with lesion care and pain management, part of it will be mental support, and part will be lifestyle changes to help limit the impact the flare-ups have on you, like adopting a Hidradenitis suppurativa diet. Here is a look at some of the things people with HS have found can help.

Tips from those with some experience

Adopting some or all of these helps some people with reducing some of the symptoms. They are not going to completely cure you or clear up a flare-up completely. See what works for you.

Take care with what you use on your skin

Showering often is important to keep the bacteria away, but care should be taken with the kind of soap you use and what you use on your hair too. Take care not to block pores, or scrub too hard. Pat dry gentle, especially those places more prone, armpits, under breasts, in skin folds and around the genitals. Moist areas are more prone to get infected.

Think about the kind of hair removal you use

It is a very sensible plan to discuss with your dermatologist what type of hair removal is best for you, but some suggest shaving should be done carefully as during a bad flare-up it might cause further irritation.

Adopt a healthy and balanced diet

There is not a set Hidradenitis suppurativa diet. But it has been found that certain foods might make symptoms worse, in particular sugary foods, those with brewers yeast and dairy foods. Controlling your weight is also a good way to maintain a healthy body and could reduce the severity of symptoms in some people. Being overweight does not cause HS, but it means you have more risk of skin folds rubbing together.

Quit smoking

Smoking is definitely not helping your symptoms. Quitting could make a real and noticeable difference. If you find it too hard, look for support from your doctor or check out the aids that are around, there is more help than there ever was.


These are not promises. These are some of the more common things people with HS have tried to help lessen the symptoms and get back to a normal life. For some people, they make a bigger difference, and in others, the difference is less obvious. But with a healthier lifestyle, a healthier Hidradenitis suppurativa diet and working with your support group you can find a way through.