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.
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.
What Else Should I Know
Making healthy choices can help with psoriasis. Here are some things you can do:
- If you smoke, quit. Smoking can trigger outbreaks of psoriasis in some people.
- Avoid alcohol. It can make psoriasis treatments less effective.
- Eat healthy foods. Eating a lot of fruits and vegetables can help fend off diseases that might trigger psoriasis.
- Stay at a healthy weight. This decreases the risk of inverse psoriasis.
- Keep skin clean and well moisturized. Bathing daily with bath salts or oils and then applying moisturizer can help ease the symptoms of psoriasis.
People who have psoriasis may feel self-conscious about how it looks. That’s one reason why some people turn to a therapist or join a support group of people who understand what they might be going through.
The key to psoriasis treatment is keeping up on whatever your doctor prescribes. If that means applying an ointment twice a day, then find a way to remind yourself to do it so you don’t forget. Psoriasis is one of those things that you need to stay focused on treating, even when you’re feeling OK.
Whether your psoriasis is mild or severe, learn all you can about it. Talk to your doctor or check websites like:
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Living With Psoriatic Arthritis
Living with psoriatic arthritis is all about maintaining the right treatment plan. With the right treatment plan in place, you can live a life free of pain and inflammation. Most doctors prescribe a combination of therapies to patients with psoriatic arthritis. This can include drug therapies, home remedies, and lifestyle changes to increase mobility, treat psoriasis symptoms, and minimize joint pain.
Even though psoriatic arthritis is a lifelong, chronic, autoimmune disorder, this does not have to impact your quality of life. Get diagnosed early, have your doctor develop a treatment plan, and stick to it. These are the keys to living a healthy life with psoriatic arthritis.
How Are Eczema And Psoriasis Treated
Treatment for eczema and psoriasis depends on the type and the severity. Mild cases of both psoriasis and eczema can be managed with lifestyle changes and over-the-counter medications and creams.
Eczema is often treated with:
- Antihistamines to help with allergic reactions and itchiness
- Pain relievers for burning, swelling, or pain
- Over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream
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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 them 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.
How Do Dermatologists Diagnose Psoriasis
To diagnose psoriasis, a dermatologist will examine your skin, nails, and scalp for signs of this condition. Your dermatologist will also ask if you have any:
Symptoms, such as itchy skin
Joint problems, such as pain and swelling or stiffness when you wake up
Blood relatives who have psoriasis
Recent changes in your life, such as an illness or increased stress
Sometimes, a dermatologist also removes a bit of skin. By looking at the removed skin under a microscope, a doctor can confirm whether you have psoriasis.
Understanding psoriasis is key
Alexa Boer Kimball, MD, MPH100 Questions and Answers about Psoriasis
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Is It Scalp Psoriasis Or Dandruff
More than half of all psoriasis patients have scalp psoriasis, according to the NPF. Itchy plaques can extend beyond the hairline onto the forehead, neck, and around the ears.
“Most people with scalp psoriasis have it on other parts of their body as well,” says Dina D. Strachan, MD, a dermatologist and assistant clinical professor of dermatology at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City.
Scalp psoriasis is sometimes confused with seborrheic dermatitis, or dandruff. According to Dr. Strachan, dandruff which causes a flaky, itchy scalp without signs of inflammation tends to itch more than scalp psoriasis. It has a greasy-appearing yellow scale, Strachan says. In contrast, psoriasis whether it’s on your scalp or any other body part tends to have a thick, silvery scale.”
Ultraviolet Treatment For Psoriasis
is the use of UV radiation to treat skin disorders, and this can be very effective in the treatment of psoriasis. It is generally reserved for cases where topical therapy has been ineffective or too much of the skin surface is involved to treat psoriasis effectively with topical agents. It is administered in cabinets at specialised centres, and a treatment course for psoriasis will usually consist of 23 treatments per week for 2030 treatments.
- Phototherapy is best avoided in patients with very fair skin, who take certain immunosuppressive medications, or who have a previous history of skin cancer.
The need for regular travel to a phototherapy centre can make this option difficult for some patients. The beneficial effects may be short-lived.
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How Do You Treat Plaque Psoriasis
Keep your psoriasis clean and moisturized.
The first step to treating psoriasis is consulting your doctor. There are creams and lotions, depending on how severe the case is, so that’s why it’s important that, if it is psoriasis, you have a physician who is prescribing treatment for you, Parcells says.
For a mild case, you may be able to treat it at home with colloidal oatmeal or unscented epsom salt baths, which will relieve itchy skin and soothe joint pain for psoriatic arthritis, respectively. For the former, try the Aveeno Soothing Bath Treatment, which claims to cleanse, moisturize, and relieve sensitive, itchy skin. For the latter, choose a soak thats unscented, like the Solimo Epsom Salt Soak, to avoid further skin irritation while you soothe your joints. After a bath, Parcells recommends applying a thick cream while the pores are still dilated from the warm water. For this, go with the Cerave Moisturizing Cream that contains hyaluronic acid to hydrate the skin and ceramides to protect the skin barrier. For a more emollient ointment that seals in moisture and adds a protective layer over the skin, try the Eucerin Original Healing Cream.
Causes And Risk Factors Of Psoriasis
Psoriasis, in general, is a genetic condition passed down through families. “It’s likely that multiple genes need to be affected to allow psoriasis to occur and that it’s frequently triggered by an external event, such as an infection,” says James W. Swan, MD, professor of dermatology at the Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine in Maywood, Illinois.
Certain risk factors, such as a family history or being obese, may increase your odds of developing psoriasis.
According to the National Psoriasis Foundation , at least 10 percent of people inherit genes that could lead to psoriasis, but only 3 percent or less actually develop the disease. For this reason, it is believed that the disease is caused by a combination of genetics and external factors or triggers.
A psoriasis outbreak may be provoked by:
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How To Treat Psoriasis
Psoriasis is a life-long disease that unfortunately has no cure. There are, however, various treatment methods to better manage the symptoms. It is therefore important to consult aboard-certified dermatologist to understand the various treatment options.
The following medications can be used to treat mild psoriasis and manage the symptoms:
Signs And Symptoms Of Psoriasis
Psoriasis plaques can range from a few spots of dandruff-like scaling to major eruptions that cover large areas. The diseases symptoms and appearance vary according to the type and severity of psoriasis.
Some common signs and symptoms include:
- Discolored patches or raised plaques of skin that are covered with scales
- Burning, itching, or soreness near the affected areas
- Pitted or thickened fingernails or toenails
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Ways To Treat Psoriasis At Home
Even though it affects your skin, psoriasis actually begins deep inside your body in your immune system.
It comes from your T cells, a type of white blood cell. T cells are designed to protect the body from infection and disease. When these cells mistakenly become active and set off other immune responses, it can lead to psoriasis symptoms.
Even though theres no cure, many treatments exist to ease the symptoms of psoriasis. Here are 12 ways to manage mild symptoms at home.
Research And Statistics: Who Has Psoriasis
According to the National Psoriasis Foundation, about 7.5 million people in the United States have psoriasis. Most are white, but the skin disease also affects Black, Latino, and Asian Americans as well as Native Americans and Pacific Islanders.
The disease occurs about equally among men and women. According to the National Institutes of Health , it is more common in adults, and you are at a greater risk if someone in your family has it. A study published in September 2016 in the journal PLoS One concluded that interactions between particular genes as well as genetic and environmental factors play an important role in the diseases development.
People with psoriasis generally see their first symptoms between ages 15 and 30, although developing the disease between 50 and 60 years of age is also common.
The biggest factor for determining prognosis is the amount of disease someone has, says Michael P. Heffernan, MD, a dermatologist at the San Luis Dermatology and Laser Clinic in San Luis Obispo, California.
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Psoriasis Can Cause Arthritis
For an unknown reason, psoriasis can cause a form of arthritis known as psoriatic arthritis. Symptoms include:
- discomfort, throbbing or swelling in one or many joints
- tenderness in any joint
- pain caused by inflammation in the joints, which stimulates nerve endings.
- The joints most likely to be affected are the last joint in the fingers or toes, the sacrum , wrists, knees or ankles.
What Are The Types Of Psoriasis
Common types of psoriasis include:
Plaque psoriasis. This is the most common type of psoriasis. It causes plaques and silvery scales, usually on the knees, elbows, lower back, and scalp. They can be itchy and painful and may crack and bleed.
Guttate psoriasis. This type often shows up after an illness, especially strep throat. It causes small red spots, usually on the trunk, arms, and legs. Spots also can appear on the face, scalp, and ears.
Inverse psoriasis. This causes smooth, raw-looking patches of red skin that feel sore. The patches are in places where skin touches skin, such as the armpits, buttocks, upper eyelids, groin and genitals, or under a girl’s breasts.
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How Is Psoriasis Diagnosed And Treated
Psoriasis often has a typical appearance that a primary care doctor can recognize, but it can be confused with other skin diseases , so a dermatologist is often the best doctor to diagnose it. The treatment of psoriasis usually depends on how much skin is affected, how bad the disease is , or the location . Treatments range from creams and ointments applied to the affected areas to ultraviolet light therapy to drugs . Many people who have psoriasis also have serious health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and depression. Some people with psoriasis also have an inflammatory condition which affects their joints, called psoriatic arthritis.
Psoriatic arthritis has many of the same symptoms as other types of arthritis, so a rheumatologist is often the best doctor to diagnose it. The treatment of psoriatic arthritis usually involves the use of drugs .
Psoriatic disease may be treated with drugs or a combination of drugs and creams or ointments.
What Is Scalp Psoriasis And How Do You Treat It
Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition that can cause red, scaly patches to form on the skin. Scalp psoriasis is a type of psoriasis that affects the scalp. It can cause the scalp to become itchy, dry, and inflamed. Scalp psoriasis can also lead to hair loss. There is no cure for scalp psoriasis, but there are treatments that can help to control the symptoms.
Scalp psoriasis treatments include medicated shampoo, cream, lotion, or ointment. Steroid injections may also be used to treat scalp psoriasis. In severe cases, light therapy may be recommended.
If you are living with scalp psoriasis, it is important to find a treatment that works for you. Talk to your doctor about your options. With the right treatment, you can manage your symptoms and keep your scalp healthy.
Scalp psoriasis can be very mild or it can be severe enough to affect your quality of life. It can be difficult to treat because the skin on your scalp is different from the skin on the rest of your body. The good news is that there are a number of effective treatments available.
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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 Else Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider
If you have psoriasis, ask your healthcare provider:
- How can I prevent outbreaks and control symptoms?
- What medication will work best for me?
- What else should I do to improve symptoms?
- What are my options if creams dont work?
- Will psoriasis ever go away?
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Psoriasis, an itchy skin condition, can come and go throughout your life. Its related to an overactive immune response and is not contagious. If you have skin changes that arent going away, talk to your healthcare provider. There is no cure for psoriasis, but psoriasis treatments can improve symptoms. Your provider may prescribe a special cream or moisturizer or medications. Other therapies are available if creams or medicines dont work. Maintaining your overall health will also help improve symptoms.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 10/17/2020.
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Are There Complications Of Psoriasis
In some people, psoriasis causes more than itchiness and red skin. It can lead to swollen joints and arthritis. If you have psoriasis, you may be at higher risk of:
- Use medicated shampoo for scales on your scalp.
Other steps you should take to stay as healthy as possible:
- Talk to your healthcare provider about lowering your risk for related conditions, such as heart disease, depression and diabetes.
- Lower your stress with meditation, exercise or seeing a mental health professional.
How Is Psoriasis Treated
While there is currently no cure for psoriasis, there are treatments that keep symptoms under control so that you can perform daily activities and sleep better. Your treatment may include:
- Medications you put on your skinsuch as creams, ointments, lotions, foams, or solutionsor others that are injected or taken by mouth.
- where your doctor shines an ultraviolet light on your skin in their office.
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How Is Scalp Psoriasis Treated
Scalp psoriasis treatment often starts with over-the-counter products. If OTC treatments don’t work, your doctor may prescribe stronger medications. The most common treatments for moderate to severe scalp psoriasis include:
- Steroids: Steroid creams, lotions, gels, or solutions can help reduce inflammation and itching. They are available in OTC and prescription forms.
- Vitamin D : This vitamin helps slow down the growth of skin cells. Vitamin D is available in OTC products and prescription medications.
- Coal tar : This product reduces itching and slows down the growth of skin cells. Coal tar is available in OTC shampoos, creams, and solutions.
- : This treatment involves exposing your skin to ultraviolet light. Phototherapy can be done at home or in a doctor’s office.
- Oral medications : These medications help reduce inflammation throughout your body. They are typically used for severe cases of scalp psoriasis.
- Injections : These injections are typically used for severe cases of scalp psoriasis that haven’t responded to other treatments.