Skin conditions are a common phenomenon that different factors can cause. They can be caused by genetic factors, hormonal changes, environmental impacts, and stress. But the most common cause is the overproduction of sebum or an imbalance in bacteria that live on your skin. That’s why we will explore one of these skin conditions, which is psoriasis.
What Is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a skin disorder that generates skin cells to reproduce up to 10 times quicker than normal. There’s an overproduction of cells in the skin’s outer layer (epidermis). These cells then proliferate and form thick layers which trap moisture inside them, causing them to become inflamed and scaly.
You can experience psoriasis from any part of the body, scalp, elbows, knees, legs, and lower back. While the disorder is not contagious, it’s pretty common for several family members to experience the same disorder simultaneously.
Psoriasis usually appears in early adulthood and affects both men and women equally. Fortunately, for most, it only affects a few sparse areas when it does occur. However, in more severe cases, there have been some people who experience large parts of their bodies are covered with psoriasis.
Typically, it heals with time, but it occasionally resurfaces throughout a person’s lifetime.
The symptoms of different types of psoriatic diseases vary from person to person. Some people may have more severe symptoms due to their genetic predisposition or other factors like age and sex.
For the most common type of variety, the following symptoms may include:
- Depending on your skin color, the inflamed patches will differ, so if you have light skin, you will see red, but brown or black for dark skin tone.
- Silver or white scales or plaques exist on top of the inflamed patches.
- If the skin is too dry, it quickly cracks and then bleeds.
- Soreness around the inflamed areas.
- Swollen and painful joints
- Clutters on your fingernails or toenails could include discoloration and pitting of the nails. The nails would also easily crumble or detach from the nail bed.
Remember that it can appear anywhere, even on the scalp. Likewise, each person’s symptoms can differ from the other. However, at least three or more symptoms here in the list should appear if you have psoriasis.
Some people may not necessarily experience severe soreness for the first few days or weeks in some circumstances, and some even symptoms may clear up during the duration. However, it makes a comeback, and the condition flares up again, triggering an even worse symptom.
If you experience chronic psoriasis and have not experienced it in a while, this is what they often refer to as the “remission” phase. There’s a possibility that psoriasis will occur again, but in the meantime, you are symptom-free.
There are several sorts of psoriasis, and these include the following:
Plaque psoriasis is the most common type of psoriasis. It usually appears as raised red patches with silvery-white scales on them. These scales can be found on the elbows, knees, scalp, and back of the neck. They also tend to be itchy and tender, and they can exist sparsely or thickly.
Nail psoriasis is one type that affects the nails rather than the skin. It has been estimated that around 1% of people have nail psoriasis, with the prevalence being higher in women than men. Nail psoriasis can occur on any nail but typically affects both hands and feet’ distal or lateral nails.
The nails become somewhat brittle, and you can easily crumble them if you squeeze them. The nail can also easily come off the nailbed if you aren’t too careful.
Guttate psoriasis is a skin condition that causes small red spots to appear on the skin. An infection can trigger it, or it can develop spontaneously. The disorder can often affect children and young adults between the ages of 5 and 30.
Guttate psoriasis triggers may be respiratory infections. There is a correlation between this condition and respiratory infections like pneumonia or bronchitis. It is also associated with eczema, asthma, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Inverse psoriasis affects the skin folds, such as the groin, buttocks, and breasts. The condition may cause itchiness and redness, which can be very uncomfortable for people with this condition.
Inverse Psoriasis can be caused by a yeast infection or other fungal infections. The fungus overgrows on the skin and causes inflammation. As a result, the immune system responds in an attempt to fight off the condition, which leads to psoriatic lesions.
Psoriatic Arthritis is a chronic inflammatory disease that causes pain, swelling, and stiffness. Symptoms may range from mild to severe. It most commonly affects people aged 30-60 years old. But it can also affect younger individuals exposed to an environmental trigger (such as an infection or trauma).
Some people may only experience some joint pain. However, in severe cases, there have been instances that the conditions worsen, leading to permanent joint damage.
Pustular psoriasis is a type of psoriasis in which the skin becomes red and inflamed with pus-filled blisters. The pustules may also be filled with pus or blood. These open sores can cover large body areas and are often painful. This type of psoriasis can be challenging to treat because it usually flares up after periods of remission.
Erythrodermic psoriasis is caused by an overactive immune system, leading to skin inflammation. It most commonly affects body areas with hair follicles such as the scalp, face, chest, and back.
The symptoms of erythrodermic psoriasis are typically worse in humid weather conditions or areas with a lot of friction, such as on the scalp or back.
An erythrodermic psoriasis diagnosis is typically based on symptoms, such as a red rash with thin scales, intense itching, burning sensation, and joint pain.
The most common treatment for psoriasis is topical creams. These creams are applied to the affected areas of the body. Some can be used on the scalp as well. They work by reducing inflammation and inhibiting the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines in the skin cells.
Topical creams are not always enough to treat psoriasis because they don’t target specific cells or tissues in the body that could be causing it to flare up again later on down the line. To combat this issue, some patients try a combination of topical creams with other treatments.
Psoriasis is not deadly, but it can be annoying and potentially affect your daily life. Each person may have unique psoriasis, so if treatments don’t help, you may need to seek assistance. Feel free to reach out to our clinic, High Life Integrative Medicine. We offer services that aim to help our patients handle their skin conditions.