Psoriasis is a chronic condition that causes patches of red, inflamed skin covered with silvery scales. The severity of psoriasis varies widely from person to person, but some people have mild cases that last for only a few weeks or months. Others develop severe, life-disrupting psoriasis that can’t be cured. While there is a good understanding of the condition, there are still some surprising facts and myths surrounding psoriasis. Let’s explore a few of them;
Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease.
Psoriasis is caused by a malfunction in the immune system, which normally fights off harmful invaders like viruses and bacteria. With psoriasis, however, the immune system attacks healthy cells instead of harmful ones causing inflammation and redness on the skin’s surface and inside joints, intestines, and other tissues.
Psoriasis is contagious
Psoriasis itself isn’t contagious, but some people with psoriasis develop infections at sites where their skin has been damaged, such as through scratching. These infections can be passed on to other people through direct contact with affected areas of the body or indirectly through sharing personal items such as towels or bedding with someone who has an active infection.
Psoriasis has a genetic component
Psoriasis does have a genetic component, and having a family member with psoriasis increases the risk of developing the condition. The presence of certain genes associated with psoriasis, such as the HLA-Cw6 gene, can increase susceptibility. Still, environmental factors and immune system dysregulation also play a role in triggering the onset of psoriasis. This means that even individuals without a family history of psoriasis can develop the condition, while some people with a family history may never develop it. The interplay between genetic factors and environmental triggers is complex and not fully understood, but it highlights the multifactorial nature of psoriasis development.
Psoriasis can affect anyone at any age
Psoriasis FAQs, did you know that psoriasis affects any age? Psoriasis can affect individuals of any age, including children and older adults. While it typically manifests between the ages of 15 and 35, it is not limited to this age range. Psoriasis in children is called pediatric psoriasis, accounting for a small percentage of cases. Psoriasis affects both males and females equally and can occur in people of all ethnicities and races. The prevalence and severity of psoriasis may vary across ethnic groups, but the condition can affect individuals from diverse backgrounds.
Psoriasis can have a significant impact on the quality of life.
Psoriasis can significantly impact a person’s quality of life, affecting both their physical and emotional well-being. The visible symptoms, such as red, scaly patches on the skin, can be highly noticeable and lead to self-consciousness and embarrassment. This can affect a person’s self-esteem and body image, leading to feelings of social isolation and even depression. Acupuncture and psoriasis can also cause physical discomfort, including itching, pain, and soreness. It may restrict a person’s range of motion if it affects joints (psoriatic arthritis), making daily activities challenging. Sleep disturbances due to itchiness and discomfort can also impact overall well-being and quality of life.
Psoriasis is caused by poor hygiene
Maintaining good hygiene practices, such as regular bathing and moisturizing the skin, is important for overall skin health. However, it does not directly cause or prevent psoriasis. Psoriasis is a complex condition that involves various factors beyond hygiene, and it requires a comprehensive approach to management that addresses the underlying autoimmune and inflammatory processes. If you have concerns about psoriasis or its management, it is recommended to consult with a healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment plan.
Sun exposure is always beneficial for psoriasis
While moderate sun exposure can positively affect psoriasis symptoms for some individuals, finding the right balance and protecting the skin from excessive sun exposure is important. Sunlight contains ultraviolet (UV) rays, specifically UVB rays, which are beneficial for psoriasis. UVB rays can help slow down the rapid skin cell growth and reduce inflammation associated with psoriasis. Additionally, sunlight exposure can positively impact mood and overall well-being.
Vinegar soothes scalps
Vinegar is acidic and, therefore, can help balance out the alkaline levels in your body when ingested orally. It’s even used as a home remedy for heartburn. But did you know that it can also help soothe your scalp? Vinegar does not help relieve symptoms of dandruff or seborrheic dermatitis because no scientific evidence supports its use in these conditions. If you have scalp psoriasis or dandruff, talk to your doctor before using vinegar on your scalp since it can cause irritation and possibly increase inflammation.
Triggers can worsen psoriasis symptoms
It’s important to note that triggers can vary among individuals, and what affects one person may not affect another similarly. Understanding and identifying personal triggers can help manage psoriasis and minimize flare-ups. By recognizing and avoiding triggers as much as possible, individuals with psoriasis can better control their symptoms and reduce the frequency and severity of outbreaks. Consulting with a healthcare professional can provide additional guidance on managing triggers and developing an individualized plan.
It’s important to consult with a healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and personalized management plan if you suspect you have psoriasis or have concerns about your skin.