Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes the rapid growth of skin cells. This skin disease results in raised, red lesions covered with white scales that are frequently itchy and painful.
There are several types of psoriasis, each with different symptoms, triggers, risk factors, and complications. Although psoriasis currently has no cure, you can do several things to manage the symptoms.
If you have a skin condition that comes and goes and you suspect that it may be psoriasis, the following are several things that you can do.
See a Dermatologist
To correctly diagnose psoriasis lesions, see a dermatologist. He or she will examine your lesions, run blood tests, and may also take a biopsy and x-rays.
Depending on the results of your tests, a dermatologist will create a plan of topical treatments, light therapy, and medication. Coupled with daily self-care, this plan can reduce your skin inflammation and relieve your symptoms.
Manage Your Stress
The symptoms of psoriasis are complicated by stress and anxiety. You can counteract stress in your life with meditation and massage therapy.
To relieve stress with meditation, sit quietly once a day, close your eyes, and breath deeply for 30 minutes. Clear your mind of all thoughts and concentrate only on your breathing. This will calm and relaxed you.
You can also manage stress with a therapeutic massage. Once a week, visit a professional massage therapist for a full-body massage. This will relax your muscles and hydrate your skin with massage oil.
Get some physical exercise each day by walking, running, hiking, or yoga. Physical activity releases endorphins in the brain that boost your energy level, stimulates blood flow throughout the body, and increases your body's production of antioxidants that repair your skin.
Treat Your Skin With Therapeutic Sunlight
To give your skin a therapeutic treatment, expose it to the UVA and UVB rays of natural sunlight. These rays strengthen your skin cells and slow the rate of skin growth and shedding.
Start with a 10-minute exposure to sunlight and add one minute each day for a total of 20 minutes. To protect your body from sunburn, use a broad-spectrum sunscreen when in the sun and wear sunglasses to protect your eyes.
Moisturize Your Skin
Keep your skin hydrated each day with moisturizing lotions, creams, and ointments. Choose heavy moisturizers like petroleum jelly that trap moisture and remain on your skin for extended periods of time.
To relieve psoriasis lesions that are especially itchy and uncomfortable, moisturize them and then wrap them in clear plastic wrap. Leave this dressing on for a few hours to soften and remove some of the white scales on the surface of the psoriasis lesions.
Take a Daily Bath
Another way to keep your skin moist is to take a daily bath in water that is about the same temperature as the ambient air. The moisture you get from a bath will stay on your skin for hours and can be fortified when you use a moisturizing lotion after you bathe.
Drink Plenty of Water
Keep your body and skin hydrated by drinking 8 glasses of water each day. Drinking water is the best way to hydrate your skin from the inside out.
Use a Humidifier
To hydrate your skin, use a humidifier in your home or office. This will relieve the dryness in the air and alleviate the itching and discomfort of psoriasis lesions.
To correctly diagnose, manage, and treat psoriasis, contact The Dermatology Center Newton-Rockdale, P.C. Our board-certified dermatologist and physician assistants will give you a thorough physical exam, recommend a treatment plan, and teach you how to manage your daily psoriasis symptoms.