Psoriasis 101: The Symptoms
Psoriasis is a disorder in which your skin cells multiply up to 10 times faster than normal. Once your cells reach the surface of your skin and die, their large numbers reveal red bumps that are covered with white plaque. You can usually see psoriasis on your knees, scalp and elbows. Some people also have it on the palms of their hands, soles of their feet, and torso.
When you know how psoriasis works, you can cut down on the number of flare-ups. Perhaps you can even prevent some of them. It’s easier to gain control over your symptoms once you know what can set off your symptoms.
The Symptoms of Psoriasis
Patches of inflamed redness
Silvery scales usually cover these inflamed patches. They are often painful and may even bleed. In a few serious cases, the patches grow together and create large areas of inflamed redness.
Fingernail and toenail issues
At this point, your nails change color or they might appear pitted. Under some circumstances, they can detach themselves from your nail bed.
Crusty scales could form on the top of your head.
How Do Flare-Ups Start?
Every single person with psoriasis has their own particular triggers. The things that cause your psoriasis to flare up may not cause these symptoms in another person. To control your symptoms, it is recommended that you learn what causes flare-ups in your situation.
Psoriasis is a medical issue of your immune system. Some triggers could make the symptoms of your psoriasis worse. They include the following factors:
Cold and dry weather: Weather climates that soothe your dryness will help your symptoms. If your symptoms are flaring up, go out in sunny weather with higher levels of humidity.
Your stress levels: Stress levels can cause flare-ups, so try to stay relaxed as much as possible.
Certain medicines: Beta-blockers that treat heart disease and high blood pressure can cause flare-ups of psoriasis. So can lithium, a medication used to treat bipolar disorder. Medications used to treat malaria can also cause psoriasis flare-ups. If you are receiving treatment for heart disease, high blood pressure, bipolar disorder or malaria, tell your doctor about your psoriasis symptoms and treatment.
Certain infections: Certain infections such as tonsillitis and strep throat can set off some psoriasis outbreaks. These outbreaks can look like tiny drops that appear on your limbs and torso. HIV can also make psoriasis outbreaks worse.
Injuries: Some people claim that the smallest bruises and cuts can cause their psoriasis to flare up. For some people, their tattoos can cause outbreaks. Bug bites have also been known to cause outbreaks of psoriasis. If you’re experiencing an outbreak, wear an extra layer of clothes or gloves to avoid breaks on your body.
Liquor: Heavy drinking can cause outbreaks and interfere with your psoriasis treatments. Drinking can also make symptoms worse. This is especially true in younger men. When you combine psoriasis treatments with alcohol, the combination can create serious side effects. This is especially true for women of child-bearing age.
Tobacco use: Using tobacco can increase your chances of getting psoriasis. Being in the presence of secondhand smoke also puts you at risk for it. Tobacco and secondhand smoke can also worsen your existing conditions.
While psoriasis is a serious medical issue, a lot of the symptoms and opportunities for outbreaks are under your control. Vigilance, healthy habits, and self-care can go a long way towards preventing serious outbreaks.