Psoriasis is a chronic disease that has no known cure. It causes red, scaly patches – especially on the back, chest, trunk, knees, elbows, and scalp – that may become incredibly itchy and irritating. Psoriasis occurs in flares, which can last for a few weeks or months, then disappear slowly or go into complete remission. During flares, the psoriasis patches may range from relatively mild to incredibly dry, itchy, and cracked to the point of bleeding. It can also cause swollen, stiff joints that make day-to-day tasks difficult.
There are several types of psoriasis, and these include:
- Plaque Psoriasis – This is the most common form of psoriasis. It causes the dry, scaly patches that can not only cause pain and irritation, but also embarrassment.
- Inverse Psoriasis – This type of psoriasis occurs in skin folds and is often triggered by fungal infections.
- Pustular Psoriasis – This form is very rare, and it causes pus-filled bumps that occur in patches all across the body or on the hands and feet.
Other forms include nail psoriasis, erythrodermic psoriasis, and psoriatic arthritis, among others.
Triggers may include things like certain infections, weather, skin injuries, stress, alcohol consumption, specific types of medications, and more. Though anyone can develop psoriasis at any age, those who smoke, who have a family history of the condition, or who experience prolonged periods of excessive stress are at the greatest risk.
Treatments for psoriasis vary greatly depending on the type and the severity of the condition, and their goal is to stop the skin cells from growing rapidly enough to produce scales. For some, ointments and creams are fantastic, but still others require light therapy or a variety of prescription medications. Premier Dermatology works to provide treatments tailored specifically to each patient for the best possible results.