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What is Psoriasis?


Psoriasis is a skin disorder caused by a malfunction in the body. In a normal person, skin cells grow and rise to the surface approximately once per month.

In a person with psoriasis, however, the rate of production is kicked up several notches. This results in a buildup of excess skin cells on the skin’s surface.

This skin disorder is fairly common, particularly in Western, European, and Scandinavian populations. The National Psoriasis Foundation reports that in the United States alone about 7.5 million people have some form of psoriasis.

Worldwide, about 125 million are afflicted. While many people experience extremely mild forms of the disease, the majority of sufferers (about 60 percent) consider their condition to be a major problem in their lives.

Psoriasis typically shows up for the first time between the ages of 15 and 25. Psoriatic arthritis develops in 10 to 30 percent of cases and usually onsets between the ages of 30 and 50.


Symptoms of Psoriasis

There are five different types of psoriasis, and the symptoms vary depending on which one you have.

Plaque psoriasis: This type of psoriasis causes red raised rashes to break out on the surface of the skin. Typically, the rash is topped with silver-colored scales. The rashes are round or oval and itch.

Guttate psoriasis: The rashes appear as small teardrops that are salmon pink or red. They may be topped with a fine silver-colored scale. Typically, this type of psoriasis spreads out over the affected area.

Pustular psoriasis: This type of psoriasis is characterized by the appearance of fiery-red skin on top of which small pus-filled bumps erupt. Approximately 24 to 48 hours after eruption, the bumps merge together to form pus-filled lakes on the skin that eventually dry and peel. A fresh batch of bumps may erupt soon after.

Inverse psoriasis: The rash forms inward creating a smooth expanse of inflamed skin on the body. Inverse psoriasis usually forms under the armpits, around the genitals, and beneath the breasts.

Erythrodermic psoriasis: A red, peeling rash covers the whole body. It is accompanied by severe itching and burning sensations. Learn more on the different psoriasis cures available


Psoriasis Triggers

Though psoriasis is likely caused by an autoimmune disorder, it goes through periods of activity and remission. However, there are several things that can trigger psoriasis outbreaks. The biggest offender is stress. Not only can it cause psoriasis to flare up, but it can worsen an existing outbreak. Another common cause of outbreaks is damage to the skin. This includes cuts, bruises, and sunburns. Learn more on the different psoriasis cures available

Certain medications have been linked to psoriasis flare ups including lithium, antimalarials, ideral, quinidine, and indomethacin. If you experience outbreaks while using these medications, talk to your doctor about alternatives. Other triggers include diet, allergens, cold weather, and bacterial and viral infections.


Treating Psoriasis

The most common way psoriasis is treated is with topical medications, especially if the person only has a mild case. There are a variety of topical creams and lotions that are created with ingredients such as salicylic acid, retinoids, or corticosteroids. 

However, some of the treatments can cause side effects such as nausea and may lose their effectiveness over time. Other treatments include phototherapy using PUVA or UVB light, systemic drugs, and biologic drugs.

You want to be careful about the medications you use to treat your psoriasis. You don’t want to use something that will make the problem worse or stop working after a short while. For recommendations on the best psoriasis remedies that provide significant and long lasting relief, read our reviews of the top natural psoriasis treatments around. Learn more on the different psoriasis cures available

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