Psoriasis: Overview

If you’ve been experiencing itching and burning skin, you may want to consider having a consultation with a dermatologist. You could be dealing with psoriasis, which can cause pain and discomfort. Here is an overview of psoriasis and how you can seek a diagnosis or treatment.

What is Psoriasis?

Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition that affects more than eight million people across the country. The disease creates red and scaly patches on the scalp, lower back, elbows and knees. People with psoriasis tend to experience flareups every few weeks or months. This skin condition typically runs in families. It can show up at birth or lie dormant until stress or an infection causes a trigger in the immune system.

What Causes Psoriasis

Psoriasis is caused by an overactive immune system which causes inflammation in the body. This inflammation develops new skin cells over a few days rather than a few weeks. These new skin cells pile up on each other, resulting in thick and scaly patches, referred to as plaques, on the surface of the skin. Triggers for the development of psoriasis can include stress, infections, weather, medications, secondhand smoke exposure and alcohol consumption.

Psoriasis Symptoms

Symptoms of the disease are not contagious and can start at any age. The most common symptom is silvery-white plaques on the skin, which can vary in size. These plaques can create scaly, itching and burning sensations. If the plaques are left untreated, it can increase the risk for heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Other symptoms include pitting and ridging of the nails or swollen and stiff joints.

Get Treatment for Psoriasis

Psoriasis can be treated with the help of a board-certified dermatologist. A dermatologist can help you identify potential triggers and create a skin care routine. At Olansky Dermatology Associates, we have a wide range of treatment solutions for psoriasis. Contact us today for a consultation.

Posted on behalf of Olansky Dermatology Associates