While psoriasis is not a dangerous skin condition, it is one that can be extremely embarrassing to live with, often causing extreme self-consciousness for an individual who is suffering from psoriasis. Many people who have psoriasis will avoid certain activities—like swimming—to try to hide their psoriasis. If you’re suffering from psoriasis, here’s what you need to know about this skin condition, as well as how effective treatment options can benefit you.
What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a skin condition that’s characterized by rapidly growing skin cells. On average and healthy skin, new cells grow approximately every four weeks. In a patient who has psoriasis, though, new skin cells grow much quicker – in a few days rather than weeks.
The rapidly growing skin creates symptoms that are visible to the naked eye. Most commonly, psoriasis appears as patches of skin that are discolored and thicker. These patches usually occur on the lower back, elbows, scalp, knee caps, hands, and feet.
Possible Causes of Psoriasis
The causes of psoriasis vary on a person-to-person basis. However, having a genetic disposition to psoriasis makes a person more at-risk for developing it. Additionally, many experts agree that psoriasis is caused by an immune response that generates inflammation. The immune response may be caused by diet or stress. Psoriasis is not contagious.
Part of the reason that psoriasis is believed to be a type of immune disorder is because in some patients who suffer from psoriasis, arthritis of the joints will simultaneously develop. Sometimes, the arthritis will also affect the fingernails and toenails, causing the nails to separate from the nail bed.
Treatment for Psoriasis
There are a variety of at-home remedies that a person suffering from psoriasis may try. These include over-the-counter and prescription creams and medications. Changing to chemical-free soaps and cosmetic products can also help to reduce psoriasis.
Sometimes, dietary and lifestyle changes may be used to help treat or control psoriasis. Certain medications, stress, alcohol, and smoking may all contribute to the severity of a psoriasis outbreak.
When psoriasis is severe, more serious medical intervention may be required. This medical intervention may include the use of:
- Topical corticosteroids
- Vitamin D analogues
- The medication anthralin
- Topical retinoids
- Coal tar
Your dermatologist can guide you through all of the possible treatment options for psoriasis and help you make a determination about which is best for you.
Address Your Psoriasis Now – Make an Appointment with a Dermatologist Today!
If you’re suffering from psoriasis, you should know that there are effective treatment options available – you don’t have to live with this embarrassing skin condition. At Adult & Pediatric Dermatology, PC, we’re ready to meet with you today. To set up your first appointment, contact us at your earliest convenience.