Psoriasis is a skin disease that varies from being mild to severe. Here are the types, causes, symptoms and treatment of this condition.
Psoriasis is a skin disease that shows a buildup of skin cells. Its effects are clearly visible on the skin, but varies from being mild to severe. It can make your skin go red, itchy and scaly. The most common body parts where psoriasis occurs are hands, feet, neck, scalp and face. It can also have an effect on the nails, mouth and genital areas. No cure has been found for this skin condition yet. However, there are some treatments to minimalise the symptoms of psoriasis. This can get aggrevated in winters and the skin is more dry in this season. Onlymyhealth editorial team talked to Dr. Nandini Barua, Senior Consultant Dermatology, Paras Hospital Gurgaon, about the types, causes, symptoms and treatment of psoriasis. Read further to know such details about psoriasis.
Psoriasis causes and triggers
Psoriasis is an autoimmune dominant genetic disease and has a polygenic trait. 2-5% of the people get it due to family history. However, there are many other things that can become a trigger for psoriasis. According to Dr. Nandini Barua, here are some other triggering factors of psoriasis:
A physical trauma can trigger somebody who has a tendency of psoriasis. Even a minor trauma can show the first symptoms of psoriasis.
2. Streptococcal infection
Sometimes, cold and soar throat are because of streptococcal bacteria. So, this type of infection can also lead to the beginning of psoriasis.
3. Stress and drugs
Stress is the most common trigger of psoriasis. In fact, it can be set off because of some drugs too. Stress is a factor behind many skin conditions.
4. Alcohol and smoking
This skin disease might also get activated due to too much smoking and alcohol consumption. They can trigger psoriasis outbreaks and other skin diseases too.
Types of psoriasis
Psoriasis is divided mainly into two types, i.e Acute and chronic psoriasis. These are then classified into other sub types. The types of psoriasis differ on the basis of location of the skin disease and the traits. They are:
1. Acute psoriasis
Acute psoriasis is the guttate type that develops suddenly. It is mostly common in children. This type doesn't show symptoms like chronic psoriasis, but causes small pink spots.
2. Plaque psoriasis
Maximum people suffer through this type of psoriasis on the knees and elbows. It causes red, raised patches on the skin. In fact, the skin can even go whitish silver in colour.
3. Erythrodermic psoriasis
Erythrodermic is a very severe type and can even lead to death. It occurs on the whole body or on large parts at once. It can even lead to fever or other illnesses.
4. Inverse psoriasis
Inverse psoriasis also causes red, inflamed patches on the skin. This type of psoriasis mostly develops under armpits, breasts, groins and buttocks.
Other remaining types of psoriasis are Psoriatic Arthritis, nail psoriasis, pustular psoriasis, palmo plantar (palms and feet) and scalp psoriasis.
The symptoms of psoriasis totally depend upon the type and the severity varies from person the person. In fact, the location of the condition on the body can also be small or large. The most common symptoms of psoriasis are:
- Red patches
- Inflammed skin
- Sore and dry patches
- Painful joints
- Cracks and bleeding in skin
- Whitish silver scales
Treatment for psoriasis
Dr. Nandini said, "Psoriasis is diagnosed by a biopsy first and then specific treatment is done by the doctor. No hospital admission is required for this skin condition, unless it is erythrodermic psoriasis. Psosriasis can be dealt with at home, with remedies and medications. For acute guttate, only antibiotics are prescribed by the doctor as it is caused by streptococcal bacterial infection." On the other hand, in psoriatic plaques, there are dry whitish silver scales and dryness, for which the dermatologist might advice steroids or make you apply emollients (moisturizers). Moisturizers have to be used, otherwise the psoriasis might become active. Doctors give oral therapy, biologics and photo therapy too for this skin disease.
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