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8 ways to relieve itchy psoriasis

Many people say that the itch is the most bothersome of all their psoriasis symptoms. To relieve the itch, dermatologists give their patients the following eight tips:

  1. Treat your psoriasis. The best way to get rid of the itch is to treat psoriasis

  2. Remove scale. Less scale often means less itchiness. Removing scale can also improve the results you get from itch-relieving products.

    To remove scale, you want to use medicine like salicylic acid. This helps soften the scale, so you can gently brush it away. Pulling scale off can worsen psoriasis.

  3. Limit shower time. Limit showers to 5 minutes and baths to 15 minutes or less. Spending too much time in the water can dry your skin, which can worsen the itch.

  4. Use moisturizer. Applying a moisturizing cream or ointment after every hand washing, bath, and shower helps to seal much-needed moisture into your skin. Moisturizer helps reduce the redness and the itch. It also helps your skin heal.

  5. Try an itch-relieving product. You can buy many of these without a prescription. Once that contains menthol, or camphor tends to work best for itchy psoriasis.

    Some of these products can irritate your skin or make it drier. Using a moisturizer helps reduce the dryness.

  6. Moisturize instead of scratch. Grab your moisturizer when you have the urge to scratch. Instead of scratching, gently apply moisturizer to the itchy skin.

  7. Skip hot baths. Skip hot baths and showers. The heat can make you more itchy.

  8. Apply a cool compress. Placing something cool on the itchy skin can reduce the itch. The nerves that send itch signals to the brain don't work as well when they are cold.

relieving itchy psoriasis infographic

Szepietowski JC, Reich A. “Pruritus in psoriasis: An update.” Eur J Pain. 2015 Sep 28. doi: 10.1002/ejp.768. [Epub ahead of print].