Of individuals who suffer from psoriasis, approximately 80 percent of them suffer from a mild form of the disease. This is where there are a few patches that may need treatment but are not likely to cause problems and can be easily control. Approximately 15 percent of the people have moderate psoriasis when more skin is involved and the condition is widespread. In individuals who have severe psoriasis (5 percent of people) a large area of skin is covered with psoriasis and the condition becomes difficult to manage by themselves or will no longer respond to any treatment.
Normally skin cells mature at 21 to 28 days. During this time they travel to the surface of the skin where they are lost in a constant invisible shedding of dead cells. However, in individuals who have psoriasis, the turnover of skin cells is much faster. It happens in around four to seven days. This means that even live skin cells will reach the surface and accumulate with the dead cells.
Unfortunately, at this time there is no cure for psoriasis. A lot of research is being done and in the past decade and great strides have been made in understanding what goes wrong and how it can be treated. There are a number of treatments that are effective in keeping them under control but they often include the use of steroids or other medications. The art of treating psoriasis is finding the best form of treatment in each individual case.
And, because there is no single solution that is right for everyone many individuals are able to find a great deal of relief using natural remedies for their psoriasis. Some individuals have found that eczema and psoriasis can be significantly reduced with proper exercise and diet. Because the body has been structured to be able to cure itself, giving the body the right amount of nutrition, sleep, stress reduction and exercise will often help the cells to regenerate and heal them selves as much as possible.
Using green tea with turmeric (curry spice) in combination has been found to help individuals who have inflammatory disorders. Drinking curry spice is not very palatable but it has been known to assist individuals who have inflammatory disorders including psoriasis.
Unfortunately individuals who have a skin condition also suffer from intense itching of the area. Some individuals have found relief using Aveeno brand liquid soap and moisturizers. Others find that using Neutrogena 3 percent acid shampoo on the skin to help gently remove plaques will help these skin area to heal. The recommendation is to use the shampoo for approximately 5 to 10 minutes, applying only once and lathering it into the skin. Be careful not to reinjure the skin by scratching it or using an abrasive technique which will only cause more inflammation and further increase the psoriasis.
This process described will help remove the dead skin cells that are sitting on top and will hopefully decrease the itching. Once this has happened individuals may want to try pyrithione zinc 2 percent which is a blue bar sold at the pharmacy. This however, tends to dry the skin and individuals continue to use Aveeno moisturizer.
It is also important to get plenty of exercise and to get a sweat going at the same time. This helps the dead skin cells to sluff all over the body including the patches where the eczema and psoriasis reside. By exercising outside in the sun individuals also have a greater degree of absorption of vitamin D which helps to heal the skin.
Some individuals find that using Dead Sea salts will also help to diminish the effects of psoriasis and help improve the softness of the skin.
Other individuals may suffer from psoriasis in the scalp and in the hair. This should not be confused with dandruff which is a different condition. For scalp irritation you might try a hair mask. Mashed together one overripe avocado, one tablespoon of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of honey. Mix it all together and apply it to wet hair, rubbing it into the scalp. Seal this with a shower cap or Saran wrap and let it sit for 30 to 60 minutes. It’s a good way to stop the itching scalp, decrease the flakes and restores body and luster to limp hair.
Using soaking to help rehydrate dry skin and soften and remove skin scales without damaging the underlying skin is another technique that individuals can use. Soaking can be done in a bathtub, while swimming or by applying wet compresses on the thickened areas. Because these thick scaling areas can act as a barrier to any medication or external remedies you may be trying to use, it is important to gently remove them. Regular soaking will also help to reduce the itchiness and redness.
Individuals who suffer from psoriasis should also choose their soap carefully. Soaps can dry and irritate the skin and increase the itchiness. Individuals should opt for a milder moisturizing soap that may be super fatted and contain moisturizers. Others may find more relief from soap free cleansers. No matter which product is chosen be sure to rinse it off well and apply moisturizer immediately afterwards.
Individuals who suffer from psoriasis over large areas of the body may find relief from using an apple cider vinegar dip. Apple cider vinegar has a history of being used to treat minor burns and other skin inflammation and it is also a disinfectant. It is a great soak for affected fingernails and toenails or for larger areas individuals may soak washcloths of the mixture and apply it to the skin to use the itching. To prepare this add 1 cup of apple cider vinegar to 1 gallon of water.
After moisturizing you may find that wrapping the area with plastic wrap will help to keep the moisturizer in place longer and will help these psoriatic lesions to go away. Apply the moisturizers first and then wrapped with an inclusive wrap. Don’t keep the wrap on so long that the skin becomes soggy because that sets the area up for secondary infections.
Aloe vera plant has also been known for skin soothing properties. Many people keep a plant in their home for minor burn emergencies. Research in the 1990s has extended the plant’s repertoire of possible benefits to include psoriasis plaques. You can either use aloe from the plant itself by splitting open one of the leaves and applying gel onto the plaque or by purchasing an aloe vera product over the counter.
Many individuals find that by using natural remedies to treat their psoriasis they avoid this secondary side effects that often occur with medications made by pharmaceutical companies.
National Psoriasis Foundation: Phototherapy
PsoriasisRX: Home Remedies for Psoriasis
HOmeMade Medicine: Home Remedies for Psoriasis