Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition that causes skin cells to grow too quickly. In psoriasis, patches of red, thickened skin with silvery scales develop, usually on the elbows, knees, scalp, and trunk. These areas can be itchy and painful. Nails may become rough and pitted, and less commonly, a form of arthritis develops called psoriatic arthritis. The exact cause of psoriasis is not known. Psoriasis can be a persistent problem, and tends to run in families. Stress, infections such as a sore throat, reaction to certain drugs, and skin injuries may trigger an attack or make it worse.
- Red or pink colored spots or patches covered with silver-colored scales.
- Shedding of silvery scales to expose red patches beneath.
- Dry, cracked skin that may bleed.
- Itching, burning or soreness.
- Thickened, pitted or ridged nails.
- Swollen and stiff joints.
- Scalp is usually affected, with loss of scales and matting of hair.
Home Remedies for Psoriasis
- Oatmeal bath: Add oatmeal oils to a lukewarm bath; pat skin dry. Oatmeal bath oils help soften scaly plaques and relieve itching.
- Aloe vera: Apply aloe vera gel or cream thinly to irritated and itchy patches of skin and rub lightly.
- Avocado oil: Gently apply avocado oil to the affected area.
- Bitter gourd and lime: Drink slowly a cup of fresh juice of bitter gourd mixed with a teaspoon of lime juice on an empty stomach daily for 3-4 months.
Do’s for Psoriasis
- Eat a well balanced diet (consisting of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and grains).
- Take a daily bath in warm water to soak off the scales.
- Apply a moisturizer to lubricate and soften scaly patches of skin.
- Manage stress. Try deep breathing and relaxation exercise.
- Exposure to sunlight can help improve psoriasis but be careful not to burn. Sunburn can make it worse.
- Keep nails trimmed which may prevent the spread or flare-ups of psoriasis.
- Use a home humidifier to increase moisture in the air.
Don’ts for Psoriasis
- Avoid tea, coffee, all animal fats, and processed foods.
- Don’t scratch or rub patches of thickened skin.
- Avoid cold and dry climates.
- Avoid harsh skin products.
- Avoid lotions that contain alcohol, which can dry the skin and make psoriasis worse.
- If you think that you have psoriasis see your doctor first.
- Psoriasis is not controlled by treatment.
- Large areas of skin become red and inflamed, and have a fever and feel unwell.
- Develop joint pains.