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5 Psoriasis Signs to Take Seriously

5 Psoriasis Signs to Take Seriously

Protecting your body is a full-time job for your skin. As a result, a lot of skin conditions can damage it. The pimples, rashes, patches, and other abnormalities that afflict the skin sometimes indicate underlying conditions that need treatment. 

Though not as common as acne, psoriasis is a skin disease that affects 7.4 million people in the United States and 125 million worldwide. Several types of psoriasis can damage your skin.

If you see signs of psoriasis or another skin problem, Dr. Javier Zelaya and his team at Skinworks Dermatology, with three New York City locations, can help.

Psoriasis basics

Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition that causes a swift buildup of skin cells. These cells typically grow in deeper layers of the skin, move to the upper layer, and fall off in about a month. 

With psoriasis, skin grows in a few days and doesn’t fall off when it should; this overproduction results in cell buildup that damages the skin. The disease most often appears on joints, such as the elbows and knees, but can show up on your face, scalp, neck, hands, or feet.

There are five types of psoriasis, with plaque psoriasis being the most common. Psoriasis isn’t curable as yet, and the exact causes of this disease are still being researched. It’s believed genetics and immune system problems are factors.

Signs to take seriously

Red rashes and scaly skin are common symptoms of psoriasis, and these signs may come and go depending on what triggers them. Other signs may indicate a need for medical attention, including:

Cracked, bleeding skin

The red lesions and silvery scales associated with plaque psoriasis can become severe enough to cause dryness and cracking.

Joint pain

Pain, swelling, and stiffness in the joints indicate psoriatic arthritis. Up to 30% of people with psoriasis have been diagnosed with this form of arthritis. Swelling may also affect your fingers and toes.

Damaged nails

Discoloration, pitting, and splits in lifted nails are signs of nail psoriasis, which can also happen if you have the more common plaque psoriasis.

Fever and chills

These symptoms are rare but can indicate a dangerous type of this illness known as erythrodermic psoriasis, which causes a red rash that looks like a burn over a large area of your body. It also causes dehydration.

Burning skin pain

A burning sensation is a possible symptom of different types of psoriasis, including erythrodermic, though each presents with a distinct set of other signs.

Prevention and treatment

There are a few things you can do to prevent outbreaks of psoriasis, including avoiding the triggers that cause them, keeping your skin healthy, and maintaining a healthy diet. 

Also, avoid harsh soaps and cleaners that can dry out or otherwise damage skin, reduce stress that can lead to outbreaks, and moisturize frequently.

Treatment options vary depending on your symptoms and the severity of the problem. Common methods of dealing with psoriasis include medicated creams, light therapy, immune therapies, and medications like methotrexate or cyclosporine for more severe cases.

If you’d like to learn more about treatment for psoriasis symptoms, call the office in Maspeth, Chelsea, or Park Slope, or request your appointment online today.

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