Learn the Truth about Psoriasis
Psoriasis produces symptoms that cause many people to mistake it for a skin disorder. The condition is an autoimmune disease. Internal T-cells malfunction causing skin cells to multiply faster than the body can shed them.
The resulting lesions are multiple layers of skin. Researchers do not know the exact cause but believe there is a genetic link. There is no cure for the life-long illness. The signs of psoriasis may appear and disappear randomly throughout life.
The Five Types of Psoriasis
- Plaque psoriasis is the most common occurring in 80 percent of psoriasis suffers. Commonly found on the knees, elbows and back, it can appear anywhere on the body including the nails and scalp. Symptoms include raised red patches with a coat of silvery scales on top.
- Guttate psoriasis present signs suddenly. It usually appears on the limbs and trunk. It causes small red spots that are normally widespread. It is the second leading type of psoriasis. It occurs most frequently after a bacterial or viral infection.
- Postular psoriasis occurs in less than five percent of the people. It becomes red, itchy and progresses to pus-filled raised bumps. It commonly goes through a cycle of scaling, healing and reappearing many times. It may occur primarily on the palms and bottom of the feet, but it can be widespread.
- Inverse psoriasis generally occurs in the skin folds. This form is most common in overweight people. Sweating and friction irritate the disease. The skin lesions appear as smooth shiny patches of red inflamed skin.
- Erythrodermic psoriasis affects under two percent of the people. It covers the body in a red rash that is scaly. The lesions become inflamed, painful and damage the skin. The damaged skin fails to act as a barrier and becomes unable to regulate body temperature.
Psoriasis has a stigma attached to it because it is misunderstood. People not familiar with the condition often believe it is contagious. Some believe it is an issue of poor l hygiene. While neither perception is true, those who suffer from the condition often experience embarrassment and humiliation.
People with psoriasis have a trigger that causes an outbreak. The best known are stress, smoking, weather, infections, drug reactions, obesity, allergies and skin injuries.
Treatment varies for different people. It can include skin moisturizers, products containing coal tar, UV light therapy, limited exposure to sunlight and autoimmune medications. Although not curable, psoriasis is treatable.