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Psoriasis | Triggers and Treatments

Nothing can zap your confidence like a nasty red rash that pops up just before the job interview or big date.  Skin has a way of revealing what’s going on inside of us – be it stress, nutritional deficiencies, allergies or illness – often before we realize there’s a problem.  It can make a statement about our health by sending up a red flag in the form of a rash, which often leaves us baffled and unsure of how to treat it.

Identifying rashes is no easy task, and often requires the help of a doctor to diagnose and treat.  Psoriasis, one of the more common rashes, has distinct characteristics, which are a dead giveaway if you know how to identify it.  Let’s take a look at Psoriasis’s typical appearance, and some of the theories behind the causes of this universal rash.

Psoriasis, a chronic (long lasting) inflammatory skin condition, typically presents itself as patches of red to brown skin that’s covered with silvery-white scales.  The scales are its trademark.  It usually shows up on the scalp, ears, eyebrows, elbows, knees, arms, legs and back, but can occur on any part of the body.  It can even have an affect on toe and fingernails, causing them to lose their shine and develop ridges and pits.

Normally, skin cells take twenty-eight days to mature – moving from skin’s bottom layer to the epidermis or top layer during maturation.  With Psoriasis, psoriatic skin cells, which are on the epidermis, grow rapidly and mature in about eight days.  These cells don’t shed like normal skin cells and instead buildup; producing scaly patches and lesions called plaques that tend to get larger with time.  The rash occurs due to the excessive production of skin cells, and typically follows a pattern of periodic flare-ups with periods of remission in between.

Psoriasis commonly strikes between the ages of mid-teens to twenty-five, but can affect people of all ages, and does not discriminate between men and women.  The only good thing it has going for itself is it’s not contagious, so no need to worry about passing it on.

Unfortunately, no one knows for sure what causes psoriasis, but there are some known triggers that often cause attacks: stress, anxiety and nervous tension; some illnesses and infections; surgery, cuts and trauma to skin; sunburn, diet, sleep apnea, allergies, alcohol, and the use of several drugs, including certain prescription drugs and some anti-inflammatories.  The triggers aren’t limited to these, nor are they the same for everyone, so if you suspect you may have this skin condition, pay attention to things that cause flare-ups and try to avoid them.

Psoriasis can affect the scalp and cause temporary baldness.  Fortunately, once the scalp recovers, hair regrows.  Some people are inflicted with psoriatic arthritis, which causes arthritic symptoms like stiffness, swelling, pain and redness of the joints.  Other serious health issues can result from psoriasis, so early treatment is recommended in order to control and avoid future problems.

One heath issue I want to single out is depression and its relationship to psoriasis.  Studies indicate one-fourth of psoriasis patents suffer with depression due to the emotional stress and low self-esteem that often accompany it.  If this applies to you, seek medical attention and counseling, so you can improve your quality of life.  There’s no need to give psoriasis anymore control of your life than you have to.  I can’t stress this enough.

Although its cause is unknown, there are theories of possible underlying reasons, which you may want to consider and speak with your doctor about.  Genetics seem to play a major role, often causing psoriasis to run in families.  An overactive immune system is considered another common cause, which is responsible for the overactive cell growth.  The body’s improper utilization of fats, which is linked to other skin conditions, as well, is one possible cause.  Poor or compromised immune function may play a role, and is a possible cause for psoriasis associated with HIV and AIDS.  Some experts suspect a backed up colon with a buildup of toxins, which is usually caused by prolonged constipation, may be responsible.  Many of these theories are just that – theories, but should all be taken into consideration.

Treatment for psoriasis often depends on its severity and includes topical creams, prescription pills, injectable medications and ultraviolet light therapies.  Consult a doctor for an appropriate psoriasis treatment.  Dermatologists and general practitioners are doctors who normally treat this condition.  Natural remedies consisting of vitamins, minerals, omega oils and herbs can easily be found online and in natural healthcare books.  Research on psoriasis has taken off since the 1970s, so no one should have to silently suffer alone.

If you suspect or know you have psoriasis, or any other skin condition, don’t ignore it.  If you try over-the-counter or home remedies that don’t work, see a doctor.  Early treatment can rid or minimize psoriasis, so act on it now.  For more information visit the National Psoriasis Foundation at

by Aaron Marino

Past Topics

New Topics Added Weekly!
Face Redness | Rosacea -
March 12, 2012
Do you experience face redness other than times when you’re hot, drinking alcohol, or blushing from embarrassment?  Or, do you have an unexplained red rash on your face?  If so, it could be Rosacea – a condition that affects more women than men, yet is still a problem for many men, who typically have more severe cases than women. Fair skinned people are at greatest risk, especially those of Read More»
Simple Skincare for Men -
January 6, 2012
Times have definitely changed when it comes to men’s skincare. We’ve come out of the dark ages, and are now permitted and encouraged to take care of our skin. However, many of us are still clueless about what traditionally has been for women only, and have no idea what skincare is really about or how to address it. Along with being oblivious, we’re usually intimidated and embarrassed by the Read More»
Ways to Remove Blackheads | Clean Clogged Pores -
August 5, 2011
When was the last time you took a good close look at your nose? Have you paid special attention to your pores? Did you notice that the pores on your nose are larger than the rest of your face? Dark pores are blackheads (clogged pores). Aaron Marino of alpha m. talks about how to get rid of these blackheads. Excess dirt, oil, moisturizer, and foundation gets stuck in the pores and builds-up. Once aRead More»
Dark Under Eye Circles | Causes, Treatment, Cure -
February 12, 2011
Some days when you wake up, do you feel tired? Tired also means old, ugly, hung-over, and strung-out. The point is that when someone says you look 'tired' means that you don't look so hot. Aaron Marino of alpha m. says that dark under eye circles can age a person more than gray hair and wrinkles. If persisting, dark under eye circles could be a illness or darker pigmentation where the melanin accuRead More»

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