Psoriasis is a common skin condition that can affect anyone, although it’s more common in people between the ages of 15 and 35. With this condition, your skin cells grow faster than normal. The body naturally develops new skin cells every month to replace skin that sheds or flakes off. New skin cells form within days rather than weeks with this skin disorder. This rapid growth causes dead skin cells to accumulate on the skin’s surface, resulting in thick patches of red, dry, and itchy skin.
Psoriasis is a chronic condition, but symptoms may improve over time.
5 Types of Psoriasis
Occurring on the scalp, nails, and joints. In the United States, about 7.5 million people have psoriasis, according to the American Academy of Dermatology.
This form causes raised, red patches on the skin. Skin patches can be itchy and painful.
This type of begins in childhood or young adulthood.
This type causes red lesions in body folds.
This type causes white blisters and red skin.
This rare inflammatory type can develop over the entire body. Symptoms include widespread redness, pain, and severe itching.
The exact cause is unknown; however, it’s believed that your immune system and genes may contribute to the condition. Your body’s T-cells normally fight viruses and bacteria. In psoriasis, they may start to attack healthy skin cells. Your body increases its production of new skin cells in response to this attack. These new skin cells move to the outer layer of your skin before dead skin cells shed, triggering scaly skin patches.
If you’re diagnosed, your doctor may refer you to a dermatologist. A dermatologist is a doctor who specializes in skin diseases.
There’s no cure for psoriasis. But with treatment, you can reduce inflammation and skin irritation. Some treatment options are described below.
Medications – Topical Therapy
- Topical corticosteroids
- Vitamin D analogs
- Topical retinoids
- Salicylic acid
If severe or your skin doesn’t respond to other treatments, your doctor may prescribe medications to suppress your immune system.
Along with treatments recommended by your doctor, you can take other steps to reduce symptoms. Oatmeal baths may soothe irritated, red skin. Applying moisturizer to dry, itchy skin immediately after a bath or shower can also reduce flare-ups. Your skin may improve if you limit alcohol consumption and learn ways to manage stress.
Talk to one of Top10MD Dermatology specialists about your treatment options today!