What is psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a skin condition that causes the body to make new skin cells within a few days, rather than weeks. This causes cells to build up quickly on the surface of the skin, forming visible scales and red patches. It is a chronic disease that can wax and wane, but unfortunately there is no cure. Adults are more affected than children, but it can develop at any age. The symptoms can be managed with treatments and certain lifestyle measures can help.
What are the causes?
The cause of psoriasis is not known, but there is often a family history. The scalp, elbows, and knees are the most common sites, but almost any part of the skin can be affected. It is not contagious. Although psoriasis usually begins in young adulthood, it can start in childhood or first appear in old age. Psoriasis is unpredictable; patches may clear up by themselves and even disappear for months or years.
What are the symptoms?
- Red patches of skin covered with white, thick scales
- Small scaling spots (in children)
- Stiff or swollen joints
- Changes to your nails
How is psoriasis treated?
In order to diagnose psoriasis, a dermatologist will need to review your history and examine your skin and nails for signs and symptoms. Usually that is enough to make a diagnosis. If you do have psoriasis, a treatment plan will need to be created to meet your individual needs. Your dermatologist will consider the type of psoriasis you have, the places it appears on your body, the severity of the symptoms, and other medical conditions that you may have. Your treatment plan might include medication that you’ll apply to your skin, skincare advice, and tips for preventing future flare-ups. Psoriasis can be treated topically, orally, with light therapy, or with injectable medications, depending on the individual case.
Request treatments in Pinellas County, Florida
If you suffer from any of the signs or symptoms listed above, schedule an appointment at Skin Wellness Center in Pinellas Park. Our board-certified dermatologist, Dr. Melanie R. Haynes, will create an effective treatment for your psoriasis. To get started, request an appointment online or give us a call at (727) 545-3376.