There is not a clear cut cause of psoriasis, but contributing factors are genetics, environment, and inflammatory activity. Psoriasis is common amongst related family members, but is not contagious or transmissible.
Psoriasis can be triggered by a number of things, including cold, dry weather, skin and systemic infections, smoking, and certain medications. Stress is a huge cause of psoriasis, as it causes the release of inflammatory chemicals, calls cytokines. Unlike eczema, which commonly begins in childhood, psoriasis usually begins in adulthood. Stress is a
Since psoriasis causes cells to multiply at about 3 times the normal rate, cells build up and create silver looking scales on top of red lesions on the skin. Plaque psoriasis, the most common type, appears as a scaly, raised patch of skin. Plaques can vary in size, and typically present on the elbows, knees and scalp. Multiple plaques or lesions can grow together and cover large areas of the body. Itching and redness are common.
Psoriasis treatment depends on each individual patient and the location and severity of the lesions. Topical medications and creams can be utilized to treat lesions on the body to relieve symptoms and heal the skin, and medicated shampoos can be used for scalp psoriasis treatment. Topical retinoid treatments (a form of Vitamin A) can help to decrease redness, swelling and plaques, and also minimize the growth of these rapidly growing skin cells. Ultraviolet (UV) light therapy is another natural psoriasis treatment to slow the growth of skin cells.
While autoimmune conditions like psoriasis can not be reversed, there are natural treatments for psoriasis that help to modulate the immune system and decrease exposure to any known triggers. Diet and nutrition are very important, as there are certain foods that exacerbate autoimmune activity and increase inflammation in the body. Sometimes common foods in the diet need to be avoided, and food sensitivity testing can help to identify problem foods.
Focusing on emotional wellness and lifestyle modifications is extremely important in order to begin practices to help with stress reduction.
Psoriasis is considered a chronic condition, and does not resolve on it's own. Treatment is necessary to relieve the symptoms of current lesions and to decrease the formation of new lesions.
Depending on the size and severity of a psoriasis lesion, it may last for a few weeks to months. Autoimmune conditions, like psoriasis, usually have periods of flares where there is increased activity, followed by periods of remission, with decreased activity.
Natural treatment for psoriasis includes decreasing the symptoms of current lesions like redness, itching, dryness and thickness, while focusing on decreasing the likelihood of developing future lesions. Topical treatment help with current lesions, while lifestyle and dietary modifications and targeted supplements or medications aid in staying in remission for longer periods of time. Your naturopathic doctor may refer you to a doctor that specializes in autoimmune conditions if psoriasis does not respond to natural treatments.
Untreated psoriasis can cause of number of other health conditions. Psoriatic arthritis is a condition that causes joint pain and swelling in addition to skin lesions. Patients with unmanaged psoriasis also have an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease (including heart attacks and strokes), metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes.
It usually takes a few months to see results from implementing natural treatments, like changes in diet and nutrition and lifestyle modifications for stress reduction and relief.
Psoriasis typically begins in adulthood, but can be managed with natural treatments so that it does not progress or worsen as we get older.
Psoriasis is a chronic, long term condition. The goal of treatment is to decrease acute flare ups and increase time in remission with natural treatments when possible.