About The Founder
My name is Jason, from Sydney Australia.
Born in 1991, I’ve had eczema since I was 8 years old. I used steroids creams prescribed by my doctor to treat my eczema for 22 years. These topical steroid creams allowed me to live a normal life, up until they started to do more damage than good. In 2015, I tried to quit steroid creams after they became less effective and burnt my skin.
Since 2015, I have continued to try and stop using steroid creams and began my journey of withdrawals. Although my highlight reel of Instagram photos shows otherwise, the quality of my life declined rapidly.
- I constantly had red, ripped, bleeding, blistered, pus oozing skin
- My hair began to fall out
- I was unable to thermo-regulate, wearing 3 layers and a jacket in 35 degree weather
- I had night sweats and insomnia
- My skin burnt from minutes of sun exposure
- Water, my own sweat, air conditioning and even the slightest breeze would cause me to shudder in pain
- I developed a large list of food intolerances that I never had before - I lost 12kg in 2 weeks in 2017
- I developed anxiety towards food, work, and every social setting
- I went months without exercising as my skin would just rip, bleed and ooze
In some of my darkest days I found myself afraid of the pain of showering, scared of daylight, and scared of eating any food that would cause more damage. Delaying the withdrawal healing process, many times I would fall back to using steroid creams for months at a time to live normally again, until they stopped working. On one occasion where I had no hope, I contemplated suicide.
A cure does not exist yet.
Unfortunately in modern medicine, topical steroid withdrawal is still not yet considered a medical illness and therefore there is no standard treatments and no current cure.
I tried every anecdotal solution recommended by different communities online and I now know what works for me. I understand that each healing journey is unique and the products and routines that worked for me, may not work for others.
My aim in creating TSW Assist is to gather as much data as possible around anecdotal recommended solutions, in hopes to identify trending solutions to speed up the healing process of topical steroid withdrawal. TSW Assist provides crowd-sourced recommendations and collective data on treatments and therapies to empower the community with solutions to help alleviate the pain of topical steroid withdrawal. The goal is to reduce the amount of suffering and the time it takes to withdraw from topical steroids.
My Current Situation
As I currently write this, it is December 15th 2021. I can say that I am about 95% healed. With my health almost back to normal, I can live a normal life again. I can eat without anxiety. I can sleep normally. I can practice martial arts. I can enjoy the outdoors and I even went camping this year for the first time in 20 years. It might even be time for a new tattoo! Life is good.
It was many turbulent years of trial and error of different diets, products, creams and therapies. A lot of the time it seemed I was taking 1 step forward and 10 steps back. I spent tens of thousands dollars trying every solution I can find.
Topical steroid withdrawal didn’t happen to me, it happened for me. It forced me to become deeply introverted. I had to dissolve my ego of my physical body, and work through my own thought processes and patterns to stay afloat of my wavering mental health. It also allowed me to isolate myself away from the world and really concentrate on honing my skills on digital marketing, which has allowed me to create this website.
I climbed out of the dark hole that is topical steroid withdrawal, but there are hundreds of thousands, dare I say millions, of people still in that hole. Now that I am out, through this website, my mission is to help them climb out of that hole.
I am fortunate that my experience is not as severe as others going through this.
Image source: Google image screenshot
I am on a mission to find the best way to mitigate the pain and suffering of topical steroid withdrawal. On the prevention front, there are non for profit groups (such as ITSAN and Scratch That UK) out there who are doing selfless, amazing work to drive awareness, education and petition for proper warning labels on steroid creams.
Follow TSW Assist on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tsw.assist/