By definition Psoriasis is a chronic, non-contagious autoimmune disease (where the body attacks its own cells) that affects the skin and joints and commonly causes red, scaly patches to appear on the skin. The scaly patches also known as psoriatic plaques result from inflammation and excessive skin production. Skin rapidly accumulates at these sites and takes on a silvery-white appearance.
Psoriasis is a chronic skin disorder that occurs in several forms. There is psoriasis vulgaris that affects the body (more commonly the elbows and knees) or scalp, or both, and inverse psoriasis (e.g. psoriasis present on the genitals or armpits) or nail-psoriasis (e.g. psoriasis located on their nails).
The severity of psoriasis has different levels where some people may have slight, fine scaling on their elbows, or no scaling at all but only intense redness, and others may have thick, scaly plaques. Some people only have scalp psoriasis and others only have psoriasis on their legs and feet.
Psoriasis can be triggered by stress, medication, smoking, alcohol and other hormonal and emotional changes. Although the condition cannot be permanently cured the outbreak can be treated.
Remedies for Psoriasis
- Rehydrating the skin can help to ease some discomfort associated with psoriasis. Soak the skin by having a long shower or bathing in a bath tub. Wet compresses can also be applied for as a quicker rehydration remedy. Rehydration will help the skin to soften and lessen itching and cracking associated with dryness. It will also make it easier for loose scales to be removed.
- Keep the skin clean around the affected psoriasis areas to prevent infection.
- Moisturized skin will also eliminate or reduce cracking and dryness, and is especially important after rehydration. Moisturizing will also reduce inflammation and tautness of the skin, and improves skin appearance. Quick home remedies are cooking oils, lard, and petroleum jelly. The use of humidifiers can help to keep skin from drying out.
- Saturate the scalp with apple cider vinegar as a natural psoriasis remedy. The vinegar helps to re-establish the PH balance. Place the apple cider vinegar on the scalp and cover head with a plastic cap for half an hour. Wash out with an herbal shampoo to replenish oils.
- Apply aloe vera and jojoba oil to the scalp overnight for several days to relieve itching and reduce flaking or mix aloe vera gel and garlic oil in equal proportions. Apply on the affected area.
- Expose the skin to adequate amounts of sunlight and exercise.
- Use herbal oils to treat psoriasis. In a small cup of olive oil, put 2 drops of calendula oil and 1 drop of oregano oil. Rub it on the affected area.
- Dermatology and biochemistry professor Vincent Ziboh, Ph.D., of the University of California, Davis, School of Medicine, reports that fish oil capsules added to the daily diet will reduce the affected areas and thickness of the plaques, along with redness and itching.