What Parts Of The Face Does Psoriasis Affect
When psoriasis shows up on your face, it typically affects the following areas:
- Hairline A rash can develop on your upper forehead, around your hairline. This may be isolated or an extension of .
- In the ears If psoriasis scales build up in your ears, they can block your ear canal. Be sure to tell your doctor if this happens.
- Around your eyes Psoriasis scales can form on your eyelids and may cover your lashes. Areas around the eyebrows are also common sites for psoriasis on your face.
- Between the nose and upper lip This area is often sensitive. If scales form around your mouth, they may affect how you chew and swallow food. Rarely, psoriasis lesions can also surface inside your mouth, such as on the gums and tongue, or in the nose.
How A Dermatologist Can Help
With so many products, it can be difficult to know what to use. If you dont see the results you like with OTC treatment for psoriasis, you may want to see dermatologist. Dermatologists are the skin disease experts. They know how to tailor psoriasis treatment to the type of psoriasis you have. Sometimes, this requires combining treatments. You may also need one treatment plan to gain control over your psoriasis and another to maintain the results.
ReferencesMenter A, Korman NJ, et al. Guidelines of care for the management of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. Section 3: Guidelines of care for the management and treatment of psoriasis with topical therapies. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2009 60:64359.
Paghdal KV, Schwartz RA. Coal tar: Back to the future. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2009 Aug 61:294-302.
All content solely developed by the American Academy of Dermatology
The American Academy of Dermatology gratefully acknowledges the support from Amgen and .
Scalp Psoriasis Symptoms Treatment
Scalp psoriasis is quite a chronic disease. Patients often struggle with periods of remission and exacerbation, that alternate. The characteristic symptoms of this disease are flaky patches of skin, under which there is red tissue. Fortunately, you can fight psoriasis effectively, and the key to success is a good diagnostic and a high-quality treatment.
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Psoralen Plus Ultraviolet A
For this treatment, you’ll first be given a tablet containing compounds called psoralens, or psoralen may be applied directly to the skin. This makes your skin more sensitive to light.
Your skin is then exposed to a wavelength of light called ultraviolet A . This light penetrates your skin more deeply than ultraviolet B light.
This treatment may be used if you have severe psoriasis that has not responded to other treatment.
Side effects include nausea, headaches, burning and itchiness. You may need to wear special glasses for 24 hours after taking the tablet to prevent the development of cataracts.
Long-term use of this treatment is not encouraged, as it can increase your risk of developing skin cancer.
Articles On Psoriasis Locations
Psoriasis on the face is different than on other parts of the body. Your skin there is thinner and may be more sensitive to treatments. In this area, the condition usually affects your:
- Skin between your nose and upper lip
- Upper forehead
You have a lot of options for treating psoriasis in these areas. Work closely with your doctor to find what works best for you.
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Diet And Psoriasis: What’s The Connection
Can your diet help keep psoriasis under control? Maybe. An observational study published online July 25, 2018, by JAMA Dermatology found that people with psoriasis who followed a Mediterranean diet an eating pattern rich in fruits and vegetables, legumes, whole grains, fish, fruit, nuts, and extra-virgin olive oil experienced fewer severe flare-ups. This was only an association and more research is needed, but experts believe the Mediterranean diet contains many foods that have an anti-inflammatory effect in the body and may offer extra protection against psoriasis triggers.
Diagnosis Of Scalp Psoriasis
The disease can be diagnosed by a trichologist or dermatologist. An interview with the patient, during which very precise information is obtained. The most important, however, are trichological tests, which include trichoscopy. The test will be performed with a pen-like device. The trichoscopes head is equipped with a camera, which will allow the skin to enlarge. The taken photos can be sent to the laboratory for analysis. There is also the possibility of collecting and examining hair follicles, and this examination is called a trochogram. These tests will be helpful in diagnosing the disease, as well as determining the stage of the disease.
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Treatments Designed With Hair In Mind
In recent years, pharmaceutical companies have worked not just on making scalp psoriasis treatments more effective, but on making them easier and more pleasant to apply.
This gives health care providers and patients options that now include shampoos, lotions, creams, sprays, gels, foams/mousses, and ointments. For more severe scalp psoriasis or when it also appears elsewhere on the body, there are also daily pills, occasional injections, and periodic infusions available that are effective on the scalp. UV light therapy is also appropriate in select cases .
A brief introduction to the many options follows, so you can make the most of your doctor visits and get on track to improve the condition of your scalp and give you a sense of peace that scalp psoriasis so often disrupts.
What Are Other Types Of Psoriasis
Plaque psoriasis is the most common type. About 80% to 90% of people with psoriasis have plaque psoriasis.
Other, less common types of psoriasis include:
- Inverse psoriasis appears in skin folds. It may look like thin pink plaques without scale.
- Guttate psoriasis may appear after a sore throat caused by a streptococcal infection. It looks like small, red, drop-shaped scaly spots in children and young adults.
- Pustular psoriasis has small, pus-filled bumps on top of the red patches or plaques.
- Sebopsoriasis typically appears on the face and scalp as red bumps and plaques with greasy yellow scale. This type is a cross between psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis.
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Treatment You Receive At A Dermatologists Office Or Clinic
If the psoriasis fails to clear with treatment applied to the scalp or you have thick psoriasis on your scalp, your dermatologist may recommend the following.
Injections of corticosteroids: Your dermatologist can inject a corticosteroid directly into the scalp psoriasis. While this can be effective, its use is limited to a few times.
Excimer laser and other light treatments: This laser can treat psoriasis in difficult-to-treat areas like the scalp, feet, and hands. When used to treat the scalp, your dermatologist may use a device that looks like a blow dryer. A benefit of using this to treat scalp psoriasis is that this laser treats only the areas that need it.
The drawback to this treatment is that you will need to travel to your dermatologists office or a psoriasis clinic two or three times per week. Each treatment session takes about 10 minutes. Most patients need to continue these visits for several weeks. If your schedule wont permit this, be sure to tell your dermatologist.
While getting these treatments, you may also need to use another treatment at home.
Excimer laser treatment is usually painless, but possible side effects include redness and sunburn-like pain.
How Psoriasis On The Face Can Take A Psychological Toll
Having psoriasis in general is linked to emotional problems.
We do know that in patients with psoriasis, the prevalence of depression may be as high as 50 percent, Dr. Farah says. But she suspects that depression may be even more common among people who develop psoriasis on their face.
Its there for everyone to see, and this bothers some people more than others, Farah says.
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Light Therapy For Scalp Psoriasis
UV light can be used to reduce scalp psoriasis symptoms. This process uses a UV light that the scalp is exposed to, from time to time. This has to be done under your doctors supervision to prevent burns.
Do not expose yourself to tanning beds, as UV rays can cause a significant amount of damage to your skin.
Are There Alternative Therapies For Psoriasis
Conventional therapy is one that has been tested with clinical trials or has other evidence of clinical effectiveness. The FDA has approved several drugs for the treatment of psoriasis as described above. Some patients look to alternative therapy, diet changes, supplements, or stress-reducing techniques to help reduce symptoms. For the most part, alternative therapies have not been tested with clinical trials, and the FDA has not approved dietary supplements for the treatment of psoriasis. There are no specific foods to eat or to avoid for patients with psoriasis. However, some other therapies can be found on the National Psoriasis Foundation website. Individuals should check with their doctors before starting any therapy.
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Is Psoriasis The Same As Eczema
Psoriasis and eczema are two different skin conditions. They differ in where the disease appears on the body, how much it itches and how it looks. Eczema tends to appear more often behind the knees and inside the elbows. Eczema also causes more intense itching than psoriasis. Many people, especially children, can get both eczema and psoriasis.
Unwind With Lavender And Calendula
Not many antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory agents are known for helping you relax, but thats the magic of lavender essential oil. You can also add calendula oil to the mix , along with a carrier oil, and apply directly to the scalp.
Just remember to only add a few drops of essential oil to each tablespoon of carrier oil you use, and do a patch test first to make sure you dont have a sensitivity to those particular oils.
Some potential carrier oils:
- avocado oil
- jojoba oil
Sadly the science here is still a little lacking, so make sure to do your homework and chat with a derm before oiling up.
Another option that doesnt involve topical application: Since stress makes psoriasis flares worse, you can sit in a quiet room with dim lighting, some lavender oil in the diffuser, and just chilllll. This may not affect your psoriasis in the short term, but it could help the flare go away faster. And, bonus points for caring for your mental health.
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Home Remedies For Scalp Psoriasis
We can also limit the development of the disease using home remedies. Home remedies should, however, only be an addition to special medical treatments. Patients with psoriasis should watch out for any factors that affect skin irritation. They must therefore watch out for excessive sun exposure. The head should be washed with a mild shampoo. Avoid scratching the scalp, as this will damage the skin and weaken hair follicles. Hair must be combed gently, by using soft brushes or combs with widely spaced teeth. A balanced diet and avoiding alcohol and cigarettes, will also support your treatment.
How To Apply Psoriasis Medication On Your Face
Here are a few basic tips:
- Use small amounts.
- Be careful when you apply creams and ointments around the eyes. Some treatments can irritate them.
- Follow your doctorâs instructions for taking the medication so you can prevent side effects, especially with steroids.
- Ask your doctor if you can use makeup to conceal the psoriasis on your face. Some products can prevent treatment from working.
- If your medication doesnât help or causes too many side effects, work with your doctor to figure out a treatment that will help.
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The Nitty Gritty Of Scalp Psoriasis
Its easy to think that patches of dry, itchy skin on the scalp are caused by some kind of lack of hygiene. But cleanliness has nothing to do with scalp psoriasis.
Psoriasis is actually a chronic inflammatory disorder caused when the immune system doesnt work quite right. Doctors arent sure why, but some people have an immune system that churns out too many skin cells. Since the body cant get rid of these excess cells fast enough, they pile on top of each other, forming flakey, silvery scales.
Psoriasis can pop up anywhere on the body, but when it shows up on your head, dry skin patches can appear under the hair, on the back of the neck, and behind the ears.
Its easy to confuse psoriasis with dandruff, and sometimes dermatologists arent so sure themselves. When it looks like a blend between psoriasis and dandruff, they call it sebopsoriasis a cute couples name for seborrheic dermatitis, aka dandruff, and psoriasis.
However, some clues that your scalp irritation might be psoriasis include more defined or patterned pink scale-like plaques.
Dandruff looks more like generalized greasy flaking with pink patches. Over-the-counter shampoos can typically knock out dandruff, but scalp psoriasis is a little harder to treat.
What To Do For Infection
If your scalp psoriasis becomes infected, you may have crusting, redness, warmth, tenderness, and sometimes swelling of your lymph nodes. Your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic treatment for this problem.
National Psoriasis Foundation: “Specific locations: scalp,” “Scalp Psoriasis,” and “Over-the-Counter Topicals,” “Traditional systemic medications,” “Moderate to severe psoriasis: Biologic drugs.”
Handa, S. Indian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology, 2010.
Skin Therapy Letter: “Treatments for Scalp Psoriasis with Emphasis on Calcipotriol Plus Betamethasone Dipropionate Gel .”
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What Psoriasis Medications Can I Take
Biologics for Psoriasis
The following drugs are categorized under the term biologic because they are all proteins produced in the laboratory by industrial cell culture techniques and must be given either subcutaneously or intravenously. The frequency of treatment depends on the specific drug. All of these medications are very precise in that they block only one or two parts of the inflammatory reaction and are moderately immunosuppresive.
Biologics are expensive and do not cure psoriasis but as a group are quite effective and reasonably safe. If it is decided to start a patient on a biologic drug, the choice will depend on the particular physician’s expertise, as well as insurance coverage and payment issues.
Is It Scalp Psoriasis
Symptoms of scalp psoriasis can range from mild to severe. Mild cases may only cause small patches of flaky skin, while those with more severe symptoms may experience a burning and intensely itchy scalp. If you pull back your hair you may notice scaly patches of skin and/or red bumps. Its important not to scratch your scalp, as scratching could lead to infection and temporary hair loss.Since scalp psoriasis shares symptoms with other conditions such as ringworm or dermatitis, you must see a dermatologist to find out whats causing your scaly, itchy, and dry scalp.
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Skin Care Products To Try For Facial Psoriasis
Finding a skin care routine that helps with your facial psoriasis is key, although you may have to experiment a bit with different products to perfect it.
In addition to discussing prescription creams with your doctor, you may find it helps to use an over-the-counter emollient. These soothe the skin and can create a barrier of oil to protect your skin from drying out.
Humectants, like glycerin and aloe vera, can also help hydrate your skin.
You may also want to look for products with salicylic acid, which can help your skin shed psoriasis scales, or coal tar, which can reduce itching and inflammation.
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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Tips For Living With Facial Psoriasis
Donât scratch your psoriasis. Be gentle with your skin. Use a cold compress on your psoriasis. To make a cold compress, dampen a cloth in cold water and squeeze out any extra water so itâs not dripping wet. You could also use an ice pack. But donât put ice directly onto your skin. Moisturizing the area can also help. You may want to pick a fragrance-free moisturizer.
Wear sunscreen every day. Youâd want to do this even if you didnât have psoriasis to help prevent skin cancer and wrinkles. With facial psoriasis, itâs also important to avoid sunburns because they can make your psoriasis worse.
Check on makeup. If you want to hide your psoriasis, you can ask your doctor if you can use makeup to conceal. Donât assume itâs OK to do, since some products can prevent treatment from working.
Practice stress management. Stress is a possible trigger for psoriasis. There are many healthy ways to handle stress, such as exercise, meditation, making time to relax, and spending time with people you like.
If youâre self-conscious about your facial psoriasis and itâs getting in the way of your life, consider talking to a licensed therapist. They can see if you have depression, and if you do, you can get it treated. Therapy can also help you start to build the confidence to move forward, without feeling like psoriasis is holding you back.
What If Those Psoriasis Treatments Dont Work
If psoriasis doesnt improve, your healthcare provider may recommend these treatments:
- Light therapy: UV light at specific wavelengths can decrease skin inflammation and help slow skin cell production.
- PUVA: This treatment combines a medication called psoralen with exposure to a special form of UV light.
- Methotrexate: Providers sometimes recommend this medication for severe cases. It may cause liver disease. If you take it, your provider will monitor you with blood tests. You may need periodic liver biopsies to check your liver health.
- Retinoids: These vitamin A-related drugs can cause side effects, including birth defects.
- Cyclosporine: This medicine can help severe psoriasis. But it may cause high blood pressure and kidney damage.
- Immune therapies: Newer immune therapy medications work by blocking the bodys immune system so it cant jumpstart an autoimmune disease such as psoriasis.
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