What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a skin condition which mars the skin with bruises and blisters and one can experience a psoriasis itch which is likely to develop into a painful experience for its sufferers. Those who suffer with psoriasis will admit that the disease affects their lives in a big way. In one way or another, some victims of psoriasis have been confined to their homes and most stay away from the swimming pool or beach because they are embarrassed by their disease. As a matter of fact, a survey has confirmed that close to 57% of people with the disease have reported that psoriasis has impacted their self esteem in a negative way.
Indeed, psoriasis is a dreaded disease that can either affect with lesions that eventually bleed and can also cause psoriatic arthritis which inflames the joints. The National Institutes of Health has reported that close to 7.5 million Americans are suffering from psoriasis with some 10 percent or more having the more severe type which affects the joints.
Contrary to what some may think, information on psoriasis would prove that is not contagious but has everything to do with genetics. Psoriasis can affect male or female and even children of any age, and while there is no cure, there is a way to effectively control Psoriasis.
What are the different types of Psoriasis?
There are five known types of psoriasis with the most common form being Plaque. Other forms of psoriasis include Guttate, Pustular, Inverse and Erythrodermic. What does psoriasis look like? Well pictures of psoriasis would show that each of these types varies in appearance and where they are located on the skin. Let’s take a closer look at them.
Plaque is common among those who suffer from psoriasis. It is so common that eighty percent of psoriasis patients have this form of the disease. Pictures of Plaque psoriasis clearly shows that is usually located on one’s elbows, knees and lower back area. It looks like raised, red patches which are coated with dead skin which looks silver white in color.
Psoriasis pictures would show that Guttate psoriasis appears like small red spots which could well be mistaken for chicken pox. It usually plagues those children and adolescents and it attacks the body without warning. Respiratory infections, tonsillitis and stress have been listed as the main contributors for this form of psoriasis with the biggest culprit being strep throat.
Adults are more susceptible to this form of psoriasis. Usually seen on the hands and feet of a psoriasis patient, psoriasis pics would confirm that Pustular it on the form of blisters with whiteheads. This level of disease can also be spread to the entire body and commences with redness of the skin followed by scaling and pustules. This type of psoriasis can be brought on by a series of things including pregnancy, internal and topical medications as well as stress to name a few. Even being overexposed to UV light can bring on this stage of the disease.
The flare of Inverse psoriasis can be found under one’s armpits, breasts, buttocks and groin and other places on the body where the skin folds. The early stage of Inverse psoriasis has an appearance of red lesions that are not scaly but has a shiny look.
Redness of the skin, excruciating itching and pain are clear signs that one has developed Erythrodermic psoriasis. This form of the disease is present all over the body and it can get to a critical stage where you may have to call your doctor immediately. This stage of the disease can cause one to get very sick, ill enough to get an infection which may lead to pneumonia and heart failure.
Other types of Psoriasis
When psoriasis affects ones fingernail and toenails, it causes discoloration and weakens the toenails enough so that it separates from its nail bed.
Scalp psoriasis may easily be mistaken for dandruff since produces silvery scales that when scratched can cause flakes in your hair and onto your shoulders. It also has a red appearance.
As if having inflamed skin caused by psoriasis isn’t enough, one can also suffer from psoriatic arthritis. The signs of this type of psoriasis are usually discolored nails and joints that are swollen and painful. This disease is in no way as compared to arthritis but it can cause joint damage in the long run. We recommend relief from the arthritic pain caused by this type of psoriasis.
What causes Psoriasis?
Earlier on we told you that the cause of psoriasis has a lot to do with genetics. Psoriasis is also caused by the immune system and the T cell or T lymphocyte. Research has revealed that the T cell is present in our bodies to fend off unwanted bacteria and viruses. But in psoriasis patients, these infections are targeting skin cells.
The growth of the skin cells accelerates at a rate and so too does the T cells and before you know it, there is a build up of dry skin which grows thick and becomes scaly and irritable. Early treatment of this is the only thing that can stop the process. Why the T cell would suddenly become erratic, no one knows for sure but scientists are working on the theory that it may have a lot to do with either the environment or genetics.
Medical flaws aside, there are other factors which contribute to increasing the intensity of psoriasis. Cold weather, too much alcohol, overexposure to the sun and even smoking and really take your psoriasis from moderate to a worsen state. Medications that you may use for other complications may also contribute to flaring your psoriasis.
Psoriasis is a very unpredictable skin condition so doctors would usually start off the treatment process with something mild before graduating to medications that would treat the more severe kind of psoriasis. The three traditional treatments for psoriasis used are separated into topical, light therapy and oral medications.
From studies conducted, DermaTechRx Research Center recommends the All Stop™ Psoriasil™ Salve to treat psoriasis.
Today, there are many different treatments to help control psoriasis. Some can be found over the counter at a drugstore, while others require a prescription from your doctor.
For those with mild to moderate psoriasis, it’s easy to keep the skin condition under control with creams and ointments using traditional treatments. For more information on Psoriasil™, please visit the All Stop™ Psoriasis treatment page.
Some of the traditional topical treatments include Topical corticosteroids, which is a common drug for treating mild to moderate psoriasis helps to slow turn the rate of the T cell. Similarly, if you want to reduce the scaling and itching and to prevent further inflammation, Coal tar is fda approved and can be used directly on the skin. Coal tar has been around for a long time and it has helped to keep many psoriasis cases under control. If you have chosen this method of treatment for you, get ready to change your bed sheets and clothing very often as the products can not only stain your bed sheets and clothes but it also emanate a very strong smell.
Light therapy (phototherapy treatments)
With light therapy or phototherapy, natural or artificial lights are employed to treat psoriasis. Your doctor may suggest controlled exposure to sunlight which usually gets rid of the T cells. Your doctor can also recommend photochemotherapy which combines Psoralen, which is a light-sensitizing medication which is later exposed to UVA light. With this treatment the UVA light is able to go beyond skin to aggressively cure severe psoriasis. Photochemotherapy requires that a patient goes in for treatment at least three times a week. More treatments than is necessary can cause skin cancer.
Oral medications would usually consist of a drug that may combine oral and injected drugs. These may include Retinoids, which is a drug that reduces skin cells in severe psoriasis patients. Some forms of retinoids contribute to birth defects therefore a female psoriasis patient would be advised to not get pregnant until three years after inducing being exposed to this medication.
Doing your part to help Psoriasis
The old saying “charity begins at home and ends abroad” holds true especially when we are discussing the ways in which you can do your part to help improve the outlook of your skin. Home remedy for psoriasis may not signal a cure for psoriasis skin disorder but at least it can help a patient’s self esteem problem especially as these home remedies can improve the appearance of one’s skin.
You can commence this care regime by first taking regular baths while being soaked in products that would soothe your blistered skin and remove the dead skin as well. These products can be basic like Epsom salts, bath oil and even oatmeal bath soak. If you are to use regular soap, ensure that it is mild with high oils and fats additives.
Excess moisturizing of your skin is also recommended after your bath. There are a few ointment-type moisturizers available that moistens the skin longer than some of the supposedly leading creams and lotions available. It’s always best that you apply your moisturizer when your body is still damp from your bath. Application of moisturizers may have to be increased, especially in the colder months of the year.
Again we must reiterate the importance of exposing your psoriasis to sunlight. Not too much sun to later bring on more unnecessary outbreaks or skin cancer but just enough to see improvements of the scars on your skin. It would be wise to consult with a doctor who would better advise you on how many days per days and hours you can stay out in the sun. Exposing one’s lesions to the sun may be one of the more natural psoriasis cure.
Covering your infections after application of ointment-type moisturizer overnight can also help to soothe your skin and remove scales. It is recommended that the infected area be covered with plastic wrap in order to improve the look of your skin.
Psoriasis care should also be extended to your finger and toe nails. Always keep your nails trimmed or short to avoid worsen stages of nail psoriasis. If you work a lot with your hands, it would be best to use gloves as to protect your fingernails. For this psoriasis home remedy, the 20 minute fingers soak should be followed up with a nail moisturizer.
Similarly, your toenails need attention too and they should also be soaked in warm water for close to 10 minutes. Toenails should be trimmed and then filed for better results. To avoid the thick formation on your toenails, one is advised to wear shoes that would allow the toes to breathe while avoiding friction.
Facts about Psoriasis
- Close to 125 million people around the world are living with psoriasis.
- Cases of psoriasis in African Americans are 1.3 percent while Caucasians are 2.5 percent.
- A survey has reported that some 11 percent of psoriasis sufferers eventually develop psoriasis arthritis.