Plaque Psoriasis: Bad News and Good News

The skin is the body’s largest organ with crucial functions that keep the mind and body healthy, especially in keeping pathogens away and keeping the body cool. Indeed, when it becomes infected or injured, the body will definitely experience the ill effects. This is true in case of plaque psoriasis!

Bad News

Plaque psoriasis, unfortunately, is a common chronic skin condition that causes the appearance of a few or several dry, red, and raised lesions (i.e., plaques). These lesions, which can appear anywhere on your body including the soft tissues inside the mouth and genitals, are oftentimes itchy and painful. Suffice it to say that plaque psoriasis isn’t a walk in the park, particularly in terms of quality of life.

The ill effects aren’t just in relation to the physical symptoms either. Plaque psoriasis also affects mental health because the affected person can become too embarrassed to appear in public places. Many persons affected by it, in fact, also experience anxiety, loss of self-confidence, and depression because of it.  

Good News

But there’s also good news about the skin condition, if it’s any consolation. For one thing, it comes and goes so there’s relief to be enjoyed when it isn’t present. Your quality of life will not be as severely affected because the lesions are usually minimum in number, if at all.

For another thing, its symptoms can be managed effectively with the latest medical treatment and lifestyle measures. You and your doctor will work together so that your skin cells will stop growing so quickly. Your doctor will be unable to provide a cure for plaque psoriasis – there are none, so far – but your quality of life will be better with proper treatment.

In many cases, mild plaque psoriasis will have little effect on your quality of life, too. But when you experience these symptoms, you have to see your doctor for appropriate action:

  • Pain, even mild discomfort, which doesn’t go away
  • Difficulty in doing routine tasks
  • Results in concern about your skin’s appearance
  • Onset of joint problems, such as swelling and pain in the joints

You can also minimize, if not eliminate, your exposure to your specific triggers, which can include:

  • Infections
  • Injury to the skin
  • Smoking
  • Stress
  • Vitamin D deficiency
  • Heavy consumption of alcohol

Be sure to follow your doctor’s recommended medication plan, too. Your medications will likely be a combination of topical and oral medications, such as Vitamin D analogues, topical retinoids, calcineurin inhibitors, salicylic acid, coal tar, and biologics (e.g., Cosentyx). You may also try laser and light therapy under medical supervision, as well as alternative therapies like the use of aloe vera, fish oil, and Oregon grape to lessen the lesions.  

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