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This review is from: Sunbathing Naked: and Other Miracle Cures - A Memoir (Paperback)
This memoir of dealing with the skin condition psoriasis caught my attention and while I've never had this condition I was struck by the quality of the writing and the interesting portrayal of life with this condition.
Kennaway explains that while ultimately the sunbathing is the cure, most people afflicted with a skin condition only want to cover up. The stress of having a breakout causes a feedback loop as the patches are more likely to occur when you are stressed. Many so-called cures are marketed but the medical ones are so severe that they can make the skin go blue or cause liver failure. No wonder people turn to herbal remedies and internet medicines. Some people take jobs that can be done from home, or never have relationships, worried about their looks.
Kennaway also suggests that in the past people with severe skin conditions may have been sent to leper colonies - where, leprosy not being easy to catch, they would account for the inmates who lived long and full lives.
When Kennaway got his condition cleared up he then became a sex-addict, perhaps because skin was suddenly permitted to expose and to stare at for the first time in his life. He got treatment for this also, which involved being an inmate just as the psoriasis treatment required him to stay at the Dead Sea in a resort for skin sufferers, because the UV rays are absorbed by the atmosphere by the time they reach this low point, so one doesn't get dangerously sunburnt while soaking up the healing power of the sunlight.
This is humorous and soul-searching, and very readable.