What Type Of Psoriasis Treatment Will I Need
Several treatment options can relieve psoriasis. Creams or ointments may be enough to improve the rash in small areas of skin. If the rash affects larger areas, or you also have joint pain, you may need other treatments. Joint pain may be a sign that you have arthritis.
Your provider will decide on a treatment plan based on:
- Severity of the rash.
- Vitamin A or retinoid creams.
What Causes Inverse Psoriasis
The same underlying culprits can lead to this type, only its brought on by sweat and friction. Thats why its commonly found in areas where there is skin-to-skin rubbing and moisture. Weight seems to be a factor, too. If youre overweight, youre more likely to have skin folds, prime spots for inverse psoriasis.
What Does Psoriasis Look Like
Psoriasis usually appears as red or pink plaques of raised, thick, scaly skin. However, it can also appear as small, flat bumps or large, thick plaques. It most commonly affects the skin on the elbows, knees, and scalp, though it can appear anywhere on the body. The following slides will review some of the different types of psoriasis.
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Healthy Eating And Exercise
People with psoriasis have a slightly higher risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease than the general population, although it’s not known why. Regular exercise and a healthy diet are recommended for everyone, not just people with psoriasis, because they can help to prevent many health problems.
Eating a healthy, balanced diet and exercising regularly can also relieve stress, which may improve your psoriasis.
How Do You Treat Scalp Psoriasis
Mild cases can be nipped in the bud or improved with salicylic-, coal-tar-, or clobestasol propionate-containing shampoos. More severe cases may require systemic or biologic drugs, oral treatments, light therapy, or a combination of treatments. Unfortunately, you may lose some hair with some of these treatments, which is usually temporary.
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Whats The Difference Between Scalp Psoriasis And Dandruff
Dr. Bhutani says it can be really tough to tell scalp psoriasis and dandruff aparteven for doctors! Although both conditions can cause those annoying flakes, which may be the only visible symptom at first for some people, they tend to pop up for different reasons. Unlike scalp psoriasis, dandruff isnt an autoimmune issue and can be spurred by various factors, like having very dry or oily skin, which can lead to an overgrowth of a yeast-like fungus that thrives on a moist scalp10.
But you may be able to pick up on subtle differences if you look a bit closer. Dandruff flakes can be white or yellow, which is not common in scalp psoriasis. With scalp psoriasis, plaques have a dry scale with more clearly defined edges, and the scales themselves are often thicker with a silvery sheen.
If your scalp is extremely itchy or you have any other scalp psoriasis symptoms, then you may want to schedule an appointment with a dermatologist, who can thoroughly assess whats going on. If youre only noticing some flaking and have tried an over-the-counter dandruff shampoo but havent noticed improvement, then you may want to see a dermatologist anyway theyll be able to take a closer look and prescribe something a bit stronger if you need it.
What You Can Do
Salicylic shampoos and other solutions can help with scales. Doctors can also prescribe high-potency steroids in the form of creams, gels, solutions, and foams. Creams can be greasy, so you may want to try the others on your scalp. It might help to put clobetasol foam, a corticosteroid, directly on damp skin. This is available in a prescription spray, too.
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Scalp Psoriasis Vs Seborrheic Dermatitis
Occasionally, seborrheic dermatitis of the scalp can be confused with scalp psoriasis since both can produce excess scale and can itch. Pathological examination of the skin biopsy material occasionally may be helpful in distinguishing the two entities. As a practical matter, this is rarely necessary because most patients with psoriasis have typical psoriatic lesions present in other areas, such as the elbows, knees, or torso. In addition, both conditions generally respond to similar topical medications.
What You Should Know About Scalp Psoriasis
If youre scratching your head over an itchy scalp condition that wont clear up with a traditional dandruff shampoo, you may have scalp psoriasis. This type can go hand-in-hand with plaque psoriasis , or even appear in those who dont have any history of the skin disorder at all.
Its often confused with dandruff, because, well, it itches and causes flakes, only these flakes are typically silvery-white and scaly. You might also have painful red scales or silver plaques on your head. In severe cases, scalp psoriasis appears as thickened, crusty patches of skin not only on the hairline, but also on the forehead, back of the neck and near the ears.
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How Do Health Care Professionals Diagnose Scalp Psoriasis
The fact that the scalp is a hair-bearing area in most people produces challenges in diagnosis as well as treatment. If scaling plaques are present on portions of the body in a distribution characteristic of psoriasis, then the diagnosis of the scalp disease is much easier to make.
The most important consideration in treating scalp psoriasis is getting an effective medication into the skin. Both the hair and any scale covering the disease act as an impediment to treatment. Removal of the scale in a nontraumatic fashion is very important. This can be accomplished by shampooing frequently. Using tar, selenium, or salicylic acid-containing shampoos can be helpful. This may have to be done at least twice a day initially if the scale is sufficiently thick. Gently rubbing off the scale with the fingertips and not the nails is important.
Steroid Creams Or Ointments
Steroid creams or ointments are commonly used to treat mild to moderate psoriasis in most areas of the body. The treatment works by reducing inflammation. This slows the production of skin cells and reduces itching.
Topical corticosteroids range in strength from mild to very strong. Only use topical corticosteroids when recommended by your doctor. Stronger topical corticosteroids can be prescribed by your doctor and should only be used on small areas of skin or on particularly thick patches. Overusing topical corticosteroids can lead to skin thinning.
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Turn Up With Turmeric
Another noted anti-inflammatory and skin soother, a daily turmeric supplement can help treat psoriasis .
If youd rather not take a turmeric pill, you can add the spice directly to your food. Whether you enjoy a turmeric latte or a delicious curry, there are lots of turmeric recipes to try to help your skin.
Symptom: Red And White Patches
The most common form of the disease is plaque psoriasis. It looks like areas of thick, swollen, red patches with well-defined edges. On top of these areas are the silvery-white scales. It’s easy to knock them off and cause bleeding, so be gentle with yourself when you comb your hair, shampoo, or put on and take off hats.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Scalp Psoriasis
Symptoms of psoriasis on the scalp might include:
- Fine scaling that looks like dandruff, or appears as thick, crusted plaques on the scalp
- Red, itchy areas on the scalp
- Scaling that covers parts of the scalp or the entire scalp
- Scaling that may extend beyond the hairline onto the neck
“It can be itchy and painful and all that together can make psoriasis that affects a small body area disabling,” says Dr. Friedman.
Scalp psoriasis can have a social impact, too, he adds.
“If someone sees a person with a flaky, red scalp, they may assume the person is unkempt or has a fungal infection, so there is an added level of anxiety associated with that in terms of misunderstanding what scalp psoriasis is and punishing the patients,” Dr. Friedman says.
Herbal And Natural Remedies
The National Psoriasis Foundation suggest that the following alternative preparations may help reduce the symptoms of psoriasis:
Apple cider vinegar: Applying organic apple cider vinegar directly to the scalp may help reduce itching. However, it can also cause irritation. To avoid this, dilute it in equal parts with water or rinse the scalp after the vinegar dries. Do not use it on open wounds.
Aloe vera: Applying gel or creams containing 0.5 percent aloe vera may help reduce redness and scaling.
Oatmeal: Adding oatmeal to a bath or applying an oatmeal paste to areas with psoriasis helps reduce symptoms in some people, although there is no research evidence to support this.
Tea tree oil shampoo: This may help relieve symptoms, although there is no scientific evidence to prove it. Try a little first, because some people have an allergic reaction to tea tree oil.
Turmeric: Consuming as a spice in food, as a supplement, or in a topical gel may help reduce symptoms or psoriatic activity.
The Office of Dietary Supplements note that turmeric is generally considered safe when taken by mouth or applied to the skin. However, people should check with a doctor before using any complementary therapies or supplements.
Capsaicin ointment: This may help reduce itching by numbing the nerve endings, but it may also cause a burning sensation. More research is needed to guarantee its safety and effectiveness.
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What Is Psoriasis Again
Red, scaly, painful patches or bumps on your skin are the telltale signs of this inflammatory skin condition. It happens when your skin cells turn over at a way-too-fast rate , causing a pile up of cells on the skins surface that form those angry, red patches, or plaques. Why this happens isnt so clear, but researchers believe psoriasis is caused by a mix of genetics, an overactive immune system, and triggers such as bacterial infection, skin trauma, smoking, medications, and obesity, just to name a few.
As we mentioned above, there are seven different types of psoriasis:
Theres also psoriatic arthritis, a combo of psoriasis and arthritis. Heres what you need to know about the causes and treatments for each one.
Scalp Psoriasis: Things You Need To Know
5 million people in the United States live with psoriasis and its not just a skin disease. Its a complex condition that can affect your social life, personal relationships, and even your career. For many sufferers, the condition is an embarrassment that they feel may hold them back from achieving their goals. But that doesnt have to be you.
autoimmune disease that affects the skin and jointsred patchessilvery scales that can be very itchy
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What Are Scalp Psoriasis Symptoms And Signs Can Scalp Psoriasis Cause Hair Loss
Psoriasis appears as a small bump, a papule, surmounted by scale. When these papules coalesce, a plaque is formed that is often covered by thick layers of horny scale. When this scale is shed, it appears as dandruff, which can be quite unsightly. Scratching these plaques, either because of itching or because of the impulse to remove it, is a very poor idea because of what is called the Koebner phenomenon . This may cause psoriasis to develop in areas of inflammation and trauma. Scratching off the scale will only make things worse. Although most patients do not note hair loss, there can be extensive alopeciahair loss in severe cases.
What Causes Scalp Psoriasis
Regardless of where psoriasis forms, the cause is the same. Psoriasis develops when a persons immune system has faulty signals that tell skin cells to grow too quickly. New skin cells form in days rather than weeks. The body does not shed these excess skin cells. The skin cells pile up on the surface of the skin, causing patches of psoriasis to appear.
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What Causes Nail Psoriasis
Of all the people who have some type of psoriasis, up to 50% will also have nail psoriasis. Like scalp psoriasis, it often comes along with plaque psoriasis, but it can also accompany other types or appear all on its own, too. Those with psoriatic arthritis will have an 80% chance of having nail psoriasis, too.
The same underlying causes as plaque psoriasis are at play here, too, revving up your skin cell production. Nails are considered part of the skin , which is why they are also affected by the disease.
How Does Psoriasis Affect The Nails
Nail psoriasis is very common, affecting about half of people with plaque psoriasis5. There are many different symptoms that nail psoriasis can cause, such as pitting, thickening, discoloration, and crumbling. It can be difficult to treat nail psoriasis because it can take a long time to see a positive effect, but many people are able to improve their symptoms over time. Nail involvement is also an early warning sign that you may develop psoriatic arthritis.
Read more information on symptoms and treatments for psoriasis affecting your nails.
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Shampoo For A Dry And Flaky Scalp
Several kinds, both over the counter and prescription, can help. Try selenium sulfide , zinc pyrithione, ketoconazole , or tar-basedones for thin plaques.
For thicker scales, salicylic acid shampoos can work well. Not all of these work for every person. You may have to try one for a few weeks and switch to another if it doesnât work.
Use the medicated shampoo first when youâd normally lather up. Itâs OK to use your regular shampoo and conditioner afterward. Know that tar-based options can be a bit smelly.
Rule Out Dandruff First
Scalp psoriasis can be a serious issue for those who have it. If you suspect you’re one of those people, it’s important to rule out dandruff first. Dandruff can be caused by a number of factors, but most commonly it’s the result of oily, itchy, or irritated skin. As a result of this irritation, dry skin flakes off and often lands on your hair or clothing. One key symptom to look out for here is dry skin flakes. Itchiness can also be a symptom of dandruff, but it shouldn’t be accompanied by any redness or scaly skin. If you think you see either of those things, it’s probably time to get checked out for psoriasis. In addition, dandruff often comes and goes. Keep track of how long you’re experiencing symptoms — if they’re ongoing for more than a week or so, you could be looking at scalp psoriasis.
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Things To Avoid If You Have Scalp Psoriasis
Scalp psoriasis can be very uncomfortable, but find the right treatment and avoid these 6 pitfalls, and you can keep your scalp inthe best condition possible.
1. Dry skinKeep your scalp hydrated by using a moisturizing shampoo every time you wash your hair.
2. Itching and scratchingNever pick at scales or sore patches of skin Ââ this will make the condition worse!
3. Dry, cold weatherThe weather can have a big effect on psoriasis. Cold, dry weather can make the symptoms appear worse, so make sure to wrap up warm in winter and consider getting a humidifier to take the edge off the dry air.
4. Certain medicationTell your doctor about any medication you take and ask whether it might affect your psoriasis.
5. StressStress is often linked with flare-ups, so try to reduce stress and anxiety. Meditation and yoga are a good place to start.
6. AlcoholItâs thought that excessive alcohol consumption may worsen psoriasis symptoms, so drink in moderation. If youâre taking psoriasis medication, check whether itâs okay to drink alcohol while taking them.
How should you treat scalp psoriasis?Scalp psoriasis is a somewhat rare skin disorder, affecting about 3% of the population. If you havenât yet been diagnosed with the condition, itâs worthwhile to check to see if your symptoms are the result of a more common scalp flaking disorder like seborrheic dermatitis.
Try using Clinical Strength Shampoo for seborrheic dermatitis.
What Are Causes And Risk Factors Of Scalp Psoriasis
It is generally accepted that scalp psoriasis, like all psoriasis, is related to genetic defects that affect certain parts of the immune system. There are undoubtedly environmental risk factors that trigger its initial development in genetically predisposed individuals. The notion that “emotional stress” plays a causal role or at least exacerbates psoriasis has been difficult to prove. There is no question, however, that psoriasis of the scalp can be an extremely stressful experience.
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Make Time For Afternoon Tea
Tea tree oil isnt messing around. This strong antimicrobial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory oil can treat scalp psoriasis when paired with a carrier oil .
Dont go nuts with this one. Start with just a drop or two and see how your skin reacts. Also, if youre pregnant, breastfeeding, have linear IgA disease, or are taking the antibiotic vancomycin, then this oil is not for you.
How Does Psoriasis Affect The Hands And Feet
Some people have plaques that form on the palms of their hands and/or on the soles of their feet. This is also called palmoplantar psoriasis. It can be very painful, and can keep people from working and carrying out their normal day to day activities4. People who develop symptoms on their hands and feet should see a healthcare provider to start treatment as soon as possible and control their symptoms.
Read more information on symptoms and treatments for psoriasis on hands and feet.
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