SCHAUMBURG, Ill. (Aug. 13, 2013) —
For people with psoriasis, a chronic skin condition, taking good care of their skin can alleviate some of the discomfort that may be experienced, such as itching, cracking, and bleeding of the skin. While managing the skin condition can be a challenge, dermatologists provide tips to help psoriasis patients experience relief.
“It’s extremely important for people with psoriasis to protect their skin from excessive sun. Being exposed to the sun for too long can worsen existing psoriasis and cause new psoriasis to form,” said board-certified dermatologist Stephen P. Stone, MD, FAAD, professor of dermatology and director of clinical research, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, Springfield.
Dr. Stone offers these additional tips to care for psoriasis:
- Try to avoid skin injuries, such as nicks, cuts, and bug bites.
- Treat your psoriasis. One of the most effective ways to stop the itch is to treat the psoriasis. When the psoriasis clears, the itch usually disappears.
- Try not to scratch. Scratching can worsen psoriasis. To alleviate the itch:
- Apply a cold compress.
- Apply medication as directed by your dermatologist to your skin until the psoriasis clears.
- Moisturize every day. For best results, use a lotion during the day. In addition, apply a cream or ointment before you go to bed.
“If you have joint pain or your psoriasis is extensive, be sure to see a board-certified dermatologist,” said Dr. Stone. “Psoriasis has been shown to affect other areas of health, including heart health.”
Psoriasis is characterized by raised, red, scaly plaques that appear on either certain areas of the skin, such as the scalp or elbows, or the skin on the entire body. The condition is believed to occur due to an interaction of multiple genes, the immune system, and the environment.
These tips are demonstrated in "Psoriasis Skin Care Guide," a video posted to the Academy website and the Academy’s YouTube channel. This video is part of the Dermatology A to Z: Video Series, which offers relatable videos that demonstrate tips people can use to properly care for their skin, hair, and nails. A new video in the series posts to the Academy’s website and the YouTube channel each month.
Celebrating 75 years of promoting skin, hair, and nail health
Headquartered in Schaumburg, Ill., the American Academy of Dermatology (Academy), founded in 1938, is the largest, most influential, and most representative of all dermatologic associations. With a membership of more than 17,000 physicians worldwide, the Academy is committed to: advancing the diagnosis and medical, surgical and cosmetic treatment of the skin, hair and nails; advocating high standards in clinical practice, education, and research in dermatology; and supporting and enhancing patient care for a lifetime of healthier skin, hair and nails. For more information, contact the Academy at 1-888-462-DERM (3376) or www.aad.org. Follow the Academy on Facebook (American Academy of Dermatology) or Twitter (@AADskin).