A comprehensive guide to plaque psoriasis

A comprehensive guide to plaque psoriasis

Plaque psoriasis, an autoimmune condition, affects over 8 million people in the country. It is a common and long-term skin disease that causes the skin to turn red, scaly, and itchy. Sadly, there is no treatment for plaque psoriasis. It results from the immune system attacking healthy cells as if it were fighting infections, resulting in the growth of new cells quicker than usual. This results in the build of thick patches, causing plaque psoriasis.

Causes of plaque psoriasis

Of the many kinds of psoriasis, plaque psoriasis is considered to be common. It can appear anywhere on the skin in the form of small patches or significant eruptions, covering a substantial skin area. The lower back, elbows, legs, knees, soles of the feet, face, scalp, and palms are the most commonly affected areas in plaque psoriasis. The causes for the same include:

Genetic predisposition

Psoriasis can run in families, and it certainly increases the chances of one developing psoriasis.

Environmental triggers

Exposure to triggers like stress, smoking, skin injuries, and side effects of certain medications can contribute to developing psoriasis.

Symptoms of plaque psoriasis

  • The skin features pinkness with well-defined edges. They can feel uncomfortable and often appear cracked and itchy.
  • There is soreness and burning sensation on the skin
  • Ridged and thickened nails
  • The joints are swollen and stiff

It is to be noted that since psoriasis is a multisystem disease, it could affect many other aspects of one’s life. Some of which include:

  • Experiencing other autoimmune disorders like Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis
  • High blood pressure
  • Diseases of the heart
  • Metabolic conditions like obesity and diabetes
  • Depression

Treatment of plaque psoriasis

There is no cure for psoriasis. The person will most likely go through cycles where the rash looks better before flaring up. The goal of the treatment is only to reduce the frequency of flare-ups. Some of the treatment options include:

Topical creams

Topical creams or ointments is the first course of action in the case of plaque psoriasis. Creams help to reduce inflammation and slow the growth of skin cells. Topical treatments also include shampoos and ointments to relieve symptoms.

Light therapy

In case of a widespread rash, ultraviolet light is used. This is done either at the doctor’s office or with a box specially made for this purpose. In addition, laser therapy is also done by targeting the affected skin patches.


Since psoriasis is a multisystem disease, one may need medications to work throughout the body. This will help to calm the immune system and allow the skin cells to grow slowly. However, these can trigger aggressive thoughts and liver problems.

Natural remedies for plaque psoriasis

The first natural remedy is to make lifestyle changes. Some of the tips include:

  • Ensure to not shower in hot water but only in warm water and ensure to shower every day.
  • Ensure to use hypoallergenic products or the ones recommended by a doctor.
  • Avoid using a scrubber or sponge to clean the body. Instead, use hands to avoid any irritation and flare-ups.
  • Ensure to use a moisturizing lotion within five minutes of bathing.
  • Avoid smoking and alcohol.
  • Avoid stress wherever possible.
  • Ensure to get enough sleep and work out.
  • Go for a sunbath but ensure not to overdo it.

In addition to the above,

  • Using essential oils like jojoba oil and tea tree oil (mixed with a carrier oil) brings in a lot of relief.
  • Using turmeric on the affected areas can help reduce inflammation as it contains anti-inflammatory properties.

Do’s and don’ts to follow for managing plaque psoriasis

  • The key to preventing flare-ups is to ensure that one stays away from fried and oily foods.
  • Say no to canned/tinned foods and opt for freshly cooked food.
  • Include vegetables of all colors in one’s meal, and make sure to have one fruit a day.
  • Include fish and lean meat in meals.
  • Drink a minimum of 7-8 glasses of water.
  • Most importantly, consult with a doctor and nutritionist before making changes.

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