As one of the most common chronic skin conditions, psoriasis is known for causing silver, scaly patches of plaque on your skin, as well as inflammation and discomfort.
Psoriasis Q & A
What causes psoriasis?
Your skin sheds dead cells and regenerates new cells on a daily basis. This continuous cycle is essential for having healthy skin. When you have psoriasis though, your system creates new skin cells faster than your body can get rid of the old ones, leading to a buildup.
Even though the exact cause isn’t known, dermatologists find that you’re more likely to suffer from this chronic condition if you have a family history. It’s believed that psoriasis leads to faulty signals in your body’s immune system, which results in the overproduction and accelerated growth of skin cells. Common triggers of flare-ups include:
- Bacterial or viral infections
- Skin injuries
- Stress or anxiety
- Vitamin D deficiency
- Smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke
- Certain medications that are used to treat high blood pressure or bipolar disorder
With psoriasis, you may experience:
- Red patches covered in silvery scales
- Thickened patches of skin
- Itching or burning skin
- Thickened or ridged nails
It’s also common for sufferers to have stiff and swollen joints, which can mimic the symptoms of arthritis.
Treating psoriasis involves working to reduce inflammation, clear your skin, and prevent future flare-ups. While psoriasis can’t be cured, our team offers comprehensive treatment plans that help relieve your symptoms. Your treatment plan can include:
- Topical corticosteroids
- Vitamin D creams
- Medications to slow skin cell growth
- Topical or oral retinoids (vitamin A)
We can also help you find clinical-grade moisturizers and cosmetics that are designed for sensitive skin. While these solutions won’t heal psoriasis, they can certainly reduce dryness and itching, and even prevent future flare-ups.
Some psoriasis sufferers find relief by going through phototherapy, which involves exposing your skin to controlled amounts of light. These treatments often minimize redness and stimulate skin healing. There are also some great resources on the American Academy of Dermatology’s website.