A skin disorder whose precise cause has eluded science up to now, psoriasis is a chronic disease of the immune system. It causes you to grow skin cells nearly 10 times faster than normal, resulting in thick, itchy, flaky inflamed patches of skin.
For such a skin problem, entrust it only to skin experts who have the knowledge and experience necessary to manage such a troublesome condition. In the world of dermatology, West Dermatology has just the staff of specialists you need. Get in touch with our dermatology team by filling out our online contact form or call 888-554-8740 to schedule an informative consultation with experienced dermatologists and find out more about psoriasis treatment for better health and a better appearance as soon as possible.
Types of Psoriasis
Although this aggressive skin rash is unsightly, it is not contagious. For many people, their condition heals and returns periodically over the course of their lives. There are several known types of psoriasis, and knowing which one you have makes a psoriasis treatment plan easier to develop.
Read on to learn more about the types of psoriasis.
The most common psoriasis type, this is characterized by raised patches of inflamed skin topped by silvery-white scales. The most common places that these patches flare up are your scalp, elbows, lower back, and knees.
This often starts in childhood and is characterized by small, pinkish-red spots on the scalp, torso, arms, and thigh.
This psoriasis type is similar to plaque psoriasis in color and inflammation, but the affected areas are smooth and absent the scaly texture. The patches are usually found in areas where folds of your skin touch each other, such as under your armpits, around your groin, beneath your breasts, or between your buttocks.
This is a more serious, though rare, psoriasis type characterized by pus-filled bumps (pustules) that are surrounded by inflamed skin. Although this is often localized, many flare-ups cover most of your body. If this happens, call West Dermatology immediately.
Also rare but serious, this psoriasis type covers a large part of your body with an inflamed skin rash that looks burnt. This condition makes you prone to infection, pneumonia, or even congestive heart failure, so seek emergency care if you have flare-ups like this.
This occurs in about half of all psoriasis patients and is typified by tender, sore nails, a yellowish nail color, and separation of the nail from its bed. Your risk of fungal infection skyrockets, as well.
This is particularly painful because both your skin and your affected joints are inflamed, stiff, and painful. In addition to the common psoriasis symptoms, your fingers and toes could swell up like sausages or your joints could become discolored.
Avoid These Triggers
No one is quite sure of the exact cause of psoriasis, but we do know that there is a series of factors that could trigger a flare-up, although they are not consistent from person to person. However, there are common triggers that you should avoid:
- Stress – This is one of the most common triggers, so it’s best to reduce your stress as much as possible. Make sure to exercise or take up a new hobby to release your stress.
- Cold Weather – Because winter is colder and drier, most sufferers of this skin condition suffer more during this time. Apply plenty of moisturizer every day or use a humidifier in your room while you sleep.
- Skin Injury – An injury or localized trauma can cause lesions to form on the injured area, which is called the Koebner phenomenon. This can be treated if caught early.
- Medications – Your flare-up could be caused by any one of scores of common medications, such as those used to treat malaria, bipolar disorder, high blood pressure, or even simple headaches.
- Infection – Most infections like strep throat can be a trigger, but so can minor health conditions such as an earache, bronchitis, or tonsillitis.
- Alcohol – Binge drinking is thought to be linked to psoriasis flare-ups, though the exact link is not clear. In addition to triggering flare-ups, excess alcohol can affect any treatments from doing their job.
- Smoking – This is one final trigger that can cause a flare-up.
A consultation with an experienced medical dermatologist can help you better understand your condition and its unique potential triggers.
Managing Treatment for Symptoms
Since there is no cure, psoriasis treatment is mostly about managing your symptoms. Avoiding your known triggers is the first step in managing the condition, but if you don’t know your triggers, you’ll have to work with your specialist at West Dermatology to find yours.
There are many ways to manage psoriasis treatment, including topical medications, oral treatments, and light therapy.
Following are topical psoriasis treatment medications:
- Vitamin D creams
- Retinoid creams and gels
- Steroid creams
- Coal tar ointments
These are effective oral psoriasis treatments:
- Biologic treatments made from human or animal proteins
- Retinoid pills that have similarities to vitamin A
- Methotrexate is a chemotherapy cancer drug that clears the lesions well
These light therapy psoriasis treatments are also recommended:
- UVB (Ultraviolet B) light therapy restricts the fast growth of skin cells
- Controlled doses of sunlight for 15-20 minutes a day, enough to get the vitamin D but not so much as to get a sunburn
To learn more about psoriasis treatment, visit WebMD.com.
Psoriasis on Your Mind? Talk to West Dermatology
If your skin has broken out into any of the above symptoms, don’t ignore them. While psoriasis is still unpredictable and incurable, options to manage your condition exist. Contact West Dermatology today for a consultation and experience effective psoriasis treatment as soon as possible.
Next, read about Rosacea.