Everything you need to know about psoriasis

What is psoriasis?

Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune condition that causes the rapid production and build-up of skin cells. Because of this build-up of dead skin cells, it causes a scale-like appearance on the skin.

The scales are usually silver-white and develop as thick red patches around the body. Irritation around these areas is very common. In some cases, these areas can even crack and bleed.

Psoriasis usually appears on the joints like knees or elbows but can appear elsewhere too, like

  • Hands
  • Neck
  • Scalp
  • Feet
  • Face

Are there different types?

Psoriasis can range from a few spots to covering an entire area. But one thing they all have in common is that they all go through a cycle. Flaring up for a few weeks or months and then subsiding for a while or even going completely.

The different types can vary in duration too. Here are some of the more common forms.

Plaque Psoriasis

The most common form of psoriasis. Plaque psoriasis can cause large areas of dry, red, raised skin lesion that are covered in silver scales. They can be itchy and painful. They can appear anywhere on the body.

Guttate psoriasis


This form of psoriasis usually affects children and young adults. It is also usually triggered by a bacterial infection like strep throat. The lesions are small and usually on the arms, legs and scalp.


Although the cause is still unknown, there are some triggers for certain people. If you can figure out what your own psoriasis trigger is it may be something you could try and avoid.

Here are some common triggers

  • Stress
  • Bacterial Infection like strep throat
  • Vitamin D deficiency
  • Heavy alcohol consumption
  • Smoking
  • Certain medications
  • Treatment
  • Steroid Creams

Although there is no cure for psoriasis there are some things you can do to alleviate symptoms.

Prescribed steroid creams can be extremely helpful with managing psoriasis. They decrease inflammation, relieve itching and block the overproduction of skin cells which is the basis of psoriasis.

Salicylic Acid

Some GPs recommend Salicylic Acid creams to help shed the scales and help with healing. Although it does come with some possible side effects and irritation could be one of them. Always speak to your GP before trying any treatments.



Although moisturizer won't rid you of your psoriasis, it can and does help with the itchiness, the redness and the irritation caused by psoriasis. Oil-based moisturizers work great, even plain coconut oil is great. Pop some on straight after a bath/shower to lock some extra moisture in

Related Articles

More from Life