There are multiple types of psoriasis treatment options. The primary purpose of psoriasis treatments is to slow down the production of new skin cell to reduce inflammation. Also removing the scales and keeping the skin smooth is an important aspect. Depending on your profile and severity of your condition your dermatologist will provide the apt treatment plan.
Some of the common treatments are given below
Applied on top of the skin
- Vitamin D creams – This cream helps to slow down the growth of skin cells.
- Moisturizers – These are used to relieve dry skin and restore epidermal barrier.
- Topical retinoids – This helps in normalizing the DNA activity in the cells and helps in reducing inflammation. One of the known side effects is skin irritation.
- Coal tar – This is one of the oldest treatment which helps in reducing inflammation, itching and scaling of the skin. This is available an ingredient in some shampoos and creams.
- Salicylic Acid – This agent helps to remove the extra stratum corneum layer.
- Corticosteriod – Helps to reduce inflammation.Need to be used for a small area and for small duration.
- Tacrolimus/Pimecrolimus – Helps to reduce inflammation.
Using natural and artificial sources of UV light
- Sunlight – Controlled amount of exposure to sunlight is used to decrease the growth of new skin cells which in turn calm the irritation and inflammation. Care must be taken since if the sunlight exposure is not controlled it might actual worsen the condition.
- UVB Phototherapy – Narrow band and broadband UVB treatment options are available which are administered 2 – 3 times until the skin improves.
- Excimer Laser – It is a 308-nm excimer laser emits a monochromatic and coherent beam in the UVB spectrum and delivers high fluency to a lesion while sparing the surrounding skin.It is indicated in stable and recalcitrant limited psoriasis such as elbow and knee.
These are oral or injected drugs
- Drugs – Some of the drugs that help in treating psoriasis Retinoids, Cyclosporine, Hydroxyurea, Methotrexate, Mycophenolate Mofetil and Thioguanine.
- Biologicals – Infliximab, Etanercept, Efalizumab.
- Others – Gold therpy, Oral Colchicine, Sulfasalazine and many other drugs have been tried.
Easy solutions to help alleviate the symptoms
- Daily baths – You should take daily baths which facilitates the softening and removal of scales and calms inflamed skin. This also helps in re-hydrating the skin and prevents dryness.
- Moisturizing – It’s important to keep skin from drying out which can cause cracks, bleeding and can become infected. Apply a moisturizer right after you come out from your bath.
- Avoid skin injury – Try to avoid any kind of injury like sunburn, rash etc. since these can in turn aggravate psoriasis.
- Oils – Mineral, olive and vegetable oils are all known to help in softening the skin and remove the scales. Fish oil contains omega-3 fatty acids that helps to improve the skin patches.
- Aloe – You should apply the natural aloe from the aloe vera plant and smear the gel on the plaques directly.
- Baking soda – This helps to take the itching out of the scaly patches.
- Dead sea salts – Bath solutions such as Epsom salts help in removing the scales and alleviating itching.