Saturday, November 10, 2007

Soothing Psoriasis

Did you know that about 1 in 50 adults has Psoriasis, making it one of the world's most common skin condition, according to the Psoriasis Education Program.

Medications are the main treatment for psoriasis, says glow health's skin experts, Dr. Lisa Kellett, principal dermatologist at DLK on Avenue in Toronto. But certain lifestyle choices may also help lessen your symptomes.

What is Psoriasis?-
Psoriasis is a common skin condition that causes plaques, which are red patches with silvery scales, usually found on the elbows, knees and scalp. Psoriasis can range from mild ( just a few lesions to severe (covering a large area of skin on the body. Sometimes Psoriasis can affect the nails, causing pits in the nails or nail thickening.Psoriasis is a hereditary condition( if mom and dad have it, you'll likely get it), and can start at any age. While thee is no cure or way to prevent onset of the disease, treatment can clear it up for periods of time.

Treatment Options;
Treatment of Psoriasis usually starts with prescription topical steroids. People with a very severe case or Psoriasis of the nails may also be prescribed stronger oral or injectable medications. Light treatment is another option; A dermatologist may prescribe a medication that makes skin more sensitive to light and use UVA rays to suppress the rapid turnover of skin cells in Psoriasis. Typically, the light is done two or three times a week until the Psoriasis clears up. Since prolonged exposure to UVA and UVB rays can increase your risk of skin cancer, discuss the risks and benefits of light-treatment with your dermatologist.

Lifestyle Changes;
There are few options you can try to help ease the discomfort of Psoriasis. Though studies haven't been able to substantiate a relationship between Psoriasis and food, if you find that certain food or drinks, such as sugary foods or wine, worsen the condition, try to avoid them. Since stress can worsen the condition, try to find ways to limit or reduce stress, such as yoga and meditation.

Seasonal Relief;
Psoriasis plaques can get itchy, dry and irritated in the winter, when the air gets dryer. Keep your skin moist by using a humidifier in your home, cleanse your skin with a tar-based product instead of soap and apply a moisturizer, like petroleum jelly, regularly.

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