Chronic skin disease, which is more severe at times, especially on colder winter days, and lessens at other times. It is a skin infection that causes a buildup of skin cells, and therefore accumulates and produces crusts.
Psoriasis signs and symptoms are different for everyone. Common signs and symptoms include:
- Red patches of skin covered with thick, silvery scales
- Small scaling spots (commonly seen in children)
- Dry, cracked skin that may bleed
- Itching, burning, or soreness
- Thickened, pitted or ridged nails
- Swollen and stiff joints
Types of psoriasis:
There are several types of psoriasis, namely:
Plaque psoriasis: is the most common type, can be in the form of red spots covered with white crusts, and spreads anywhere in the body.
- Nail psoriasis: is psoriasis that affects fingernails and toes, causing a change in color, thickness, and eventually falling.
- Scalp psoriasis: affects the scalp, appears in the form of red spots covered with a white layer of skin and causes dandruff, and severe itching
- Guttate psoriasis: this type appears in small red spots on the skin of the abdomen, arms, and more often the legs. … The spots are small, separate, and drop-shaped.
- Pustular psoriasis: is an uncommon form of psoriasis, it can cover small or large areas, it comes with several other symptoms such as fever, general weakness, and weight loss.
- Inverse psoriasis: This type affects people who are overweight, and often appear at the folds of the body such as under the armpit, under the breast, and near the genitals.
- Erythrodermic psoriasis: This type is very uncommon and affects large areas of the body, but there are no crusts but only redness of the skin, accompanied by severe itching and often occurs from exposure to sunlight.
- Psoriatic arthritis: this causes swelling in the joints, with itching in the skin.
Psoriasis typically starts or worsens because of a trigger that you may be able to identify and avoid. Factors that may trigger psoriasis include:
- Infections, such as strep throat or skin infections
- Injury to the skin, such as a cut or scrape, a bug bite, or a severe sunburn
- Heavy alcohol consumption
- Vitamin d deficiency
- Certain medications — including lithium, which is prescribed for bipolar disorder, high blood pressure medications such as beta-blockers, antimalarial drugs, and iodides
Psoriasis treatments reduce inflammation and clear the skin. Treatments can be divided into three main types: topical treatments, light therapy, and systemic medications.
- Topical treatments
Used alone, creams and ointments that you apply to your skin can effectively treat mild to moderate psoriasis. When the disease is more severe, creams are likely to be combined with oral medications or light therapy.
· Light therapy (phototherapy)
This treatment uses natural or artificial ultraviolet light. The simplest and easiest form of phototherapy involves exposing your skin to controlled amounts of natural sunlight.
Other forms of light therapy include the use of artificial ultraviolet a (uva) or ultraviolet b (UVB) light, either alone or in combination with medications
· Oral or injected medications
If you have severe psoriasis or it’s resistant to other types of treatment, your doctor may prescribe oral or injected drugs. This is known as systemic treatment. Because of severe side effects, some of these medications are used for only brief periods and may be alternated with other forms of treatment.