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World Psoriasis Day

World Psoriasis Day

World Psoriasis Day
On every year October 29th is celebrated as World Psoriasis Day throughout the world. This day is celebrated to give a voice to more than 130 million people with Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis around the World.

World Psoriasis Day is celebrated around the world to create awareness about the Psoriasis, to improve access to treatment and to spread the information about psoriasis and its complications. It also helps to build unity among psoriasis community.

Many psoriasis organizations, groups around the world joined together in 2004 to discuss of having a dedicated day for Psoriasis. The members of various groups of psoriasis around the world launched the World psoriasis day as 29th October.

World Psoriasis Day is presented by International Federation of Psoriasis Associations (IFPA). Various organization around the world join together with IFPA to organize various activities with a dedicated theme every year.

Facts about Psoriasis

  1. Psoriasis is an immune-mediated, genetic disease manifesting in the skin and/or the joints.
  2. There are more than 125 million people, or nearly 3% of the world’s population, men, women, and children, even newborn babies, who endure the symptoms of psoriasis.
  3. People with psoriasis are at an increased risk for other inflammatory diseases
  4. Severe psoriasis…is associated with increased risk of cardiovascular death
  5. Psoriasis has no known cure…no single treatment works for everyone
  6. Psoriasis patients are twice as likely to have thoughts of suicide, compared with others who suffer from chronic diseases.
  7. Psoriasis is not contagious.

Join us to create awareness about psoriasis and to help those who are suffering from psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.

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Tips for Winter Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis

Tips for Winter Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis

Winter care Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a dry, scaly skin disorder. It is a common, chronic, autoimmune inflammatory disease that affects both men and women, and people with cardiovascular disorders and metabolic syndrome are more likely to get it. Research has shown that it is definitely a genetic disorder and it tends to run in families.  Psoriasis is one of the most baffling and persistent of skin disorders. It’s characterized by skin cells that multiply up to 10 times faster than normal. As underlying cells reach the skin’s surface and die, their sheer volume causes raised, red plaques covered with white scales

Psoriasis typically occurs on the knees, elbows, and scalp and it can also affect the torso, palms, and soles of the feet.

Mechanism of Psoriasis :

To fully understand psoriasis, you need to see what’s happening underneath the skin.

Patients develop psoriasis when their immune system sends faulty signals that tell skin cells to grow too quickly, normal all skin cells takes  20 to 40 days to produce new skin cells and shed the old ones but during Psoriasis the immune system is overactive, triggering skin inflammation and causing skin cells to be produced faster than normal. The new skin cells are pushed to the skin’s surface in 3 to 4 days instead of the usual 20 to 40 but the body can’t shed the new skin cells at such a faster rate, so while new skin cells are being produced, the old, dead skin cells pile up on top of each other.

Psoriasis gets aggravated in Winter  

Winter season is not considered a good season for people suffering from various skin disorders. Psoriasis is no exception. In fact, psoriasis and weather change has a direct relationship. Cold winds, low humidity and higher susceptibility to cold and flu- all these can flare up psoriasis.

Reasons for the flare-up in winter:

  • Cold weather – Environmental conditions during the winter can take away the moisture from your skin to make it utterly dry. Psoriasis itself is a skin condition which is characterized by extreme skin dryness hence the overall dryness effect would increase tremendously to flare up your psoriasis.
  • Prolong use of room heaters –We use room heaters to keep the environment warm and comfortable but for a person having psoriasis, this continuous indoor heating can be a trouble maker, it has a drying effect on your skin and prolongs exposure of your skin to these hot radiations can make your skin dry and itchy.
  • Reduced exposure to sunlight – The UV rays of sunlight have a natural healing effect on your skin, deprivation of sunlight, and even when the sun rises, your skin would not get enough exposure to sunlight because of your heavy clothing.
  • Attack of cold and flu – During cold and/or flu, our immune system gets hyperactive, to fight off the infection causing viruses and bacteria this furious immune system would further increase the growth of skin cells to make the psoriasis patches thicker and denser.
  • Increased stress level – Winter months would be more stressful for people suffering from psoriasis. Increased stress means severe psoriasis.  The winter blues is the medical term used, it is a type of seasonal affective disorder (depression related to weather change) – depression due to less sunlight in winter, also play a role in worsening psoriasis.
  • Drinking less water – In general, we drink less water in winter. Less water consumption means less hydration of skin (less moisture) and hence, dryness effect of cold weather would be highly visible as drinking less water would obstruct the process of smooth elimination of toxins from our body. Accumulation of body toxins can also flare up psoriasis.
  • Uncomfortable clothing – In winter, people wear heavy clothes. These heavy clothes would rub against your psoriasis patches more frequently. Also, heavy clothes can make you sweat sometimes and when the sweat would not find any way to evaporate, it would ultimately aggravate psoriasis by making you rub the skin again and again.

Conventional methods to combat Psoriasis during winter

  • Keep your skin moist – It is very crucial to keep your skin moist with various herbal/natural topical solutions, Opt for a fragrance-free, natural moisturizing cream with active ingredients such as Aloe Vera, Shea butter, cocoa butter, honey etc. Smear coconut oil or sesame oil on the body before taking bath. Gently remove dried skin flakes without hurting the underlying skin. Use moisturizing agents which are thick and greasy.
  • Opt for a warm water bath instead of hot water- Long bathing in hot water can strip off moisture from your skin, choose warm water for bathing to apply moisturizing cream immediately after bathing to lock the water in your skin.
  • Using a humidifier – To counter the drying effect of room heaters, use a humidifier to keep the indoor air moist.
  • Drink water in liberal quantities- Drinking enough water is one of the easiest ways of flushing of the toxins from your body and keep your internal body metabolism healthy. Also, it hydrates your skin to retain the natural moisture. When you drink less water, moisture level in your body decreases. Hence, drinking enough water is one of the easiest, yet very effective ways of keeping your skin moist. You can make a small self-check, check the color of your urine. If it is pale yellow to colorless, you are drinking a good amount of water. But, if it is dark yellow, you need to drink more water.
  • Relieve stress – winter can make you feel sad, stressed and even depressed, practice yoga, meditation, regular exercises, massage therapy and other relaxation techniques. Meditation and yoga can help clear your mind, relax your body, and relieve anxiety. Exercise increases production of chemicals known as endorphins, which improve mood and energy. It can also improve sleep and decrease anxiety. These can act as game changers to fight against Psoriasis
  • Wear soft clothes and use thin layers of clothes. Wear soft cotton clothes and use layers of thin clothes instead of wearing thick heavy clothes. It would make it easy for you to remove the outer layers of clothes in the sunlight to get enough sun rays.
  • Keep a check on smoking and alcohol consumption- Alcohol is diuretic in nature and it can make your skin dry and also there is a general tendency that people drink and smoke together. Smoking is one of the most common triggers for psoriasis.
  • Keep cold and flu at bay– If you are a frequent victim of cold and flu, then wash your hands frequently, take proper rest, eat healthy food and make every possible effort to stay away from getting infected with cold and flu.
  • Taking omega 3 fatty acid supplements– Omega 3 fatty acids are the essential fatty acids which your body can’t synthesize by itself. These healthy fats reduce the skin inflammation and nourish your skin. If you are a strict vegetarian, then you can try flaxseed oil supplements also.
  • Take Vitamin D supplements– Vitamin D deficiency is often related to psoriasis.

   Ayurveda recommends the following self-care tips:   

  • Harsh soaps or body wash strip the natural oils from the skin. This makes skin dry and susceptible to infections. Use a natural body scrub. Mix flours of orange lentil (Masoor), fenugreek (Methi) seeds and green gram (whole moong) in equal proportion. Sieve the mixture of flours and store it in an airtight container. Soak three teaspoons of this mixture in water for five minutes and then use as a body scrub instead of soap or body wash. Neem and Tulsi soap is usually recommended by Ayurvedic physicians as these herbs help in combating Psoriasis. This leaves skin clean and glowing without stripping natural oils.
  • Skin injuries like scratches, sunburn, or irritation can flare up psoriasis. Avoid overexposure to the sun, skin irritants like hair dye, skin bleach etc. Even chopping few vegetables like onion, radish, garlic etc can harm skin. Cover your body with cotton clothes and wear a cap which has a sun shade. Use latex kitchen gloves while chopping vegetables.
  • Do not control natural urges like vomiting, urination, bowel emptying etc
  • Take care not to consume foods which cause indigestion. Avoid opposite foods. Curd, salt, Brinjal, sour fruits, meat, prawn, pork etc… should not be consumed with milk.  The above-mentioned foods should not be consumed by mixing one item with another. Sprouts, honey, and milk should not be consumed with meat and fish. Fish & milk: fish and sugar cane juice; jaggery and pork: honey and pork: milk and mango, banana and milk are opposite foods. Avoid salty sour or acidic foods. Say no to radish, urad dal (Black gram), sesame, jaggery (Gud), curd, fish and other sour foods.
  • Turmeric:  Turmeric is raved about for its active ingredient Curcumin which has been noted to have very powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. Research has proven that curcumin is able to inhibit the enzyme PhK which is blamed for the overactive skin cell growth associated with Psoriasis. Make thick turmeric paste with water sufficient to meet your needs for your psoriasis lesions in a glass bowl, apply the paste and cover it with gauze to prevent it from shifting and staining. Rinse off with warm water in the morning or after an hour or two removing the gauze.

Tips for Winter Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis is a condition that arises from psoriasis. Like other types of arthritis, Psoriatic arthritis causes pain, stiffness, and swelling in affected joints, those with Psoriasis are often diagnosed with Psoriatic arthritis within 10 years of the onset of Psoriasis. 

The main symptoms of Psoriatic arthritis include:

  • stiffness
  • swelling or swollen toes and fingers
  • foot pain, especially in the sole of the foot and the back of the heel
  • lower back pain
  • Joint pain, joints can become swollen, warm to the touch, and painful. These symptoms’ impact ranges from mild to severe.

Triggers of Psoriatic Arthritis flare-ups:

  • Skin trauma or injuries, such as cuts, bumps, bruises, scratches, scrapes, and infections: Prevent injuries by being careful when cooking, gardening, nail trimming, and shaving. Wear gloves and long sleeves when doing an activity that could potentially cause injury.
  • Dry skin: This type of skin injury can cause a flare-up. Aim to keep skin hydrated with moisturizing lotions and creams.
  • Sunburn: While the sunshine is good for psoriasis, getting sunburned is not.
  • Stress: Relaxation and stress reduction tactics such as yoga and meditation can help lower stress and anxiety. Consider joining a psoriasis support group.
  • Alcohol: In addition to potentially causing flare-ups, alcohol can interfere with the effectiveness of certain medications.
  • Climate: Cold, dry weather that sucks the moisture out of your skin can worsen symptoms. Drying heat units also strip moisture from your skin. Additionally, the season’s lack of sunlight can trigger flare-ups because the sunshine can improve psoriasis. Minimize your time spent in the cold and use a humidifier at home to add moisture to the air.
  • Certain medications: Drugs that can worsen psoriasis include antimalarial drugs, certain beta blockers that help treat high blood pressure and some heart conditions, and lithium, which is prescribed for some psychiatric disorders. These medications get in the way of your body’s autoimmune response and can cause a flare-up. If you take these medications, find out if they can be substituted.
  • Excess weight: Extra pounds can stress joints. Additionally, psoriasis plaques can develop in skin folds. People with psoriasis are at a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, which can be triggered by an unhealthy weight.
  • Smoking: Quitting might help clear your skin
  • Gluten: Studies have found that this protein found in some grains, including rye, wheat, and barley can aggravate psoriasis.
  • Common infections: Thrush, strep throat, and upper respiratory infections are all potential triggers for a flare-up.

Lifestyle Remedies of Psoriatic Arthritis

  • Use assistive devices during flare-ups –  Immobilize certain body parts so they can rest during a flare-up with the use of splints, braces, orthotics, crutches, or walkers.
  • Exercise can help keep joints flexible, strengthen your muscles, and boost your overall health. Walking, biking, swimming, and yoga are just a few exercises that won’t stress your joints.
  • Protect your joints by modifying how you perform daily tasks. For example, use a jar opener to remove a lid.
  • Apply hot and cold packs – The heat and cold can help lessen the pain sensation.
  • Keep your weight at a healthy level  Your joints will have less strain on them as a result.
  • Avoid contact with the sick.
  • Take adequate quantities of Vitamin D.

Psoriasis flare-ups can be painful enough to interfere with your day-to-day life. However, you can lessen the impact of flare-ups by proactively controlling your symptoms and inflammation by following a healthy and disciplined regime. Studies and research have shown that patients with willpower and by following the dos and don’ts have managed to combat this skin disease.

Also, Read about Ayurvedic Treatment for Psoriatic Arthritis

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Vigorous Regular Exercise Seen to Lower Risk of Psoriasis

Vigorous Regular Exercise Seen to Lower Risk of Psoriasis

Exercise Psoriasis

The importance of exercise has been emphasized in recent years, as researchers find more and more evidence that physical activity helps to prevent illness and improve general health. These benefits appear to extend to psoriasis, a recent study reported, finding that vigorous activity reduced a woman’s risk of developing psoriasis by as much as 30 percent.

The study, “The Association Between Physical Activity and the Risk of Incident Psoriasis,” published online in the journal Archives of Dermatology, was conducted by scientists at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and led by Abrar Quershi, an assistant professor of dermatology at Harvard.

Click to Read more

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Ayurvedic Treatment for Psoriatic Arthritis

Ayurvedic Treatment for Psoriatic Arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis causes inflammation in your joints. It happens because your immune system is overactive. It affects mostly people who have psoriasis, a skin disease that’s also related to the immune system.

Psoriatic arthritis is inflammatory arthritis that is seen in association with skin psoriasis. It causes joint pain and swelling that can lead to damage to the joint if the inflammation is not controlled. Joint damage can be prevented with the appropriate medications. Usually, psoriatic arthritis is blood test negative. The diagnosis is typically made by a rheumatologist after reviewing a clinical history and performing a physical exam. X-ray studies can show changes specific to psoriatic arthritis but these are rarely present at the onset of symptoms.

Psoriatic arthritis can affect any joint in the body, and it may affect just one joint, several joints or multiple joints. For example, it may affect one or both knees.

  • Affected fingers and toes can resemble swollen sausages, a condition often referred to as Dactylitis. Finger and toenails also may be affected by thickening or nail pitting
  • Psoriatic arthritis in the spine, called spondylitis, causes pain in the back or neck, and difficulty bending.
  • Psoriatic arthritis also can cause tender spots where tendons and ligaments join onto bones. This condition is called Enthesitis, it can result in pain at the back of the heel, the sole of the foot, around the elbows or in other areas. Enthesitis is one of the characteristic features of psoriatic arthritis.

Medications are used to reduce inflammation caused by arthritis reducing pain, swelling, and stiffness. Many of the medications suppress the immune system and lead to a potential increased risk of infections. The majority of the medications treat both the skin and joint disease, but some medications may work better for one compared to the other. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil) or naproxen (Aleve) are the initial treatment for very mild arthritis.

Newer biologic therapy has been developed to block molecules and/or their receptors leading to decreased inflammation. Many of these medications are given by injections at home or by an infusion at the doctor’s office. These medications suppress the immune system to a great degree. They have been proven to stop joint damage as well as pain and swelling in moderate to severe psoriatic arthritis.

COMMON SYMPTOMS OF PSORIATIC ARTHRITIS

  • Backache, neck pain, stiffness
  • Difficulty in bending the neck downward
  • Enthesitis (Tender spots, where ligaments and tendons join giving rise to the formation of the bones).
  • Pain in the heel, elbow and around foot sole
  • Dactylitis (Swelling in the toes and fingers)
  • Scaly skin lesions
  • Extreme exhaustion, fatigue, and tiredness

Ayurvedic Treatment of Psoriatic Arthritis

Ayurveda has the view that psoriatic arthritis can be put into a component between Vatarakta ( a joint disorder caused due to the pathological amalgamation of morbid vata and rakta i.e. blood) and Kushta (skin disorders).

It is seen in practice that the medicines and treatments applicable to Kushta are also beneficial in Vatarakta. When the Kushta, especially complicated skin conditions not responding to any medicines or treatments advised in Kushta when treated with some formulations explained in the treatment of Vatarakta have found to give stunning results.

Ayurvedic treatises give a clear idea that certain skin disorders are related to joint disorders and they can be dealt in identical ways by identical approaches in terms of formulations and treatment strategies.

Thus Psoriatic arthritis is treated either on the lines of Kushta or Vatarakta or both.

If the skin component is more i.e. if the psoriasis is evident by the skin picture and if the patient also has joint involvement, we shall treat on the basis of Kushta treatment line up.

If the skin component is less or if it has been treated so that the lesions are not available or feebly available and if the patient has developed the arthritis component on a later period (as a complication of kushta), we shall treat that condition on the lines of Vatarakta. In these conditions, the joint manifestations are superseding those of skin.

If the joint pains or arthritis has been diagnosed as Psoriatic arthritis by modern parameters (in the absence of skin psoriasis), our job becomes easy. In these conditions we can skilfully mix up the treatments of both Vatarakta and Kushta, giving importance to Vatarakta line of treatment.

Vatarakta can be effectively handled with:

  • Lepa – external application of medicinal pastes
  • Abhyanga – herbal oil massage
  • Parisheka – stream pouring or sprinkling or showering of medicinal liquids like decoctions, medicated milk, oil etc over the afflicted areas
  • Avagahana – dipping the afflicted parts or joints in the medicinal liquids
  • Upanaha – poultice

These treatments are of immense use in Psoriatic arthritis.

Clinical experience has shown that the above-mentioned treatments have shown tremendous results in combating Psoriatic arthritis, especially those which are not very severe or not complicated. The results are outstanding. When skilfully combined they reduce pain and swelling and give good relief to the patients. Of course, they should be combined with disease-modifying medicines and formulations according to the involved dosha along with a regular laxative for detoxification.

Internal medications are also administered like:

  • Khadirodaka – Juice, decoction, powder of Khadira (Acacia catechu) should be used for anointing, upward massage, application, bathing, drinking and eating (mixed with food)
  • Khadira rasa – pieces of bark, wood, leaves, roots of Khadira plant (Acacia catechu) should be boiled in a big vessel, when they are processed well, filter, mix juice of Indian gooseberry, ghee and honey and should be used internally
  • Nimbadi Kalka – eating mixture of leaves of Nimba (neem plant) and Amalaki (Indian gooseberry)
  • Vidangadi Kalka – Paste of Vidanga (Embelia ribes) and Bakuchi (Psoralea corylifolia)
  • Vidangadi Churna – Powder of Vidanga (Embelia ribes), Amalaki (Emblica officinalis), Haritaki (Terminalia chebula), Bibhitaki (Terminalia bellirica), Pippali (long pepper) mixed in hot oil.

Panchakarma methods that are  proved to be very useful are:

  • Snehapana – internal administration of medicated ghee and oils
  • Swedana – sweating treatment or steaming
  • Vamana – therapeutic emesis
  • Virechana – therapeutic purgation
  • Niruha Vasti – decoction enema

The Panchakarma treatments keep flushing out the toxins and morbid doshas and malas (waste products) on regular basis. This makes sure that the disease doesn’t progress further and the pathogenesis takes a halt at the initial stages. As the treatments are repeated on a regular basis we can see the regression of pathology and the skin getting its normal texture, color, complexion, and contour. The inflammatory symptoms, pain, itching etc come down in due course of time. When combined with external treatments like Abhyanga (massage), dhara (stream pouring of medicated liquids) etc, the pain and inflammation in the joints will reduce and the movements are seen to improve. Vasti comprehensively combats psoriatic arthritis and is, therefore, a preferred line of treatment in the later stages of the disease.

External Treatments for Psoriatic Arthritis

External treatments should essentially be conducted in Psoriatic arthritis. When combined with Panchakarma treatments and oral administration of disease-modifying formulations and medicines, the results are fortified.

To sum up, the results for psoriatic arthritis with ayurvedic medicines and panchakarma can be declared to be ‘good and great’ if the disease is not too complicated (to the level of irreversible damage to joints and soft tissues) and if the immunological component of the patient is good. If the patient is obedient enough and has a will to recover, then the results are bound to magnify!!

Though Ayurveda provides best and unparalleled cure in psoriatic arthritis, the patients with psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis cannot take ‘cure’ or ‘relief’ for granted. They need to be double cautious regarding their lifestyle, food, and stress. ‘Conscious living’ is a key. The disease has left its imprint on the body and they are bound to get darker at any time. But regular cleansing in the form of Panchakarma and keeping up with the immunity and metabolism, being choosy about good foods and keeping away the incompatible or allergic foods away, good exercise and stress-free life can guarantee a ‘long-standing and long sustained relief’. Ultimately it depends on how determined the patients are ‘to keep the disease’ away forever

There’s no cure for the condition, but newer medications can control it so well that it goes into remission, which means you have no symptoms. Proper exercise is very important to improve overall health and keep joints flexible. This can be quite simple. Walking is an excellent way to get exercise. A walking aid or shoe inserts will help to avoid undue stress on feet, ankles, or knees affected by arthritis. An exercise bike provides another good option, as well as yoga and stretching exercises to help with relaxation.

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Psoriasis Symptoms, Types, Treatments and Ayurveda

Psoriasis Symptoms, Types, Treatments and Ayurveda

Psoriasis Symptoms, Types and Ayurveda Treatments

Psoriasis is a dry, scaly skin disorder. It is a common, chronic, autoimmune inflammatory disease that affects more than 6 million people in the United States. Psoriasis affects 3% of the global population and appears to be on the rise. It affects both men and women and people with cardiovascular disorders and metabolic syndrome are more likely to get it. Research has shown that it is definitely a genetic disorder and it tends to run in families.

Unpredictable and irritating, Psoriasis is one of the most baffling and persistent disorders. It’s characterized by skin cells that multiply up to 10 times faster than normal. As underlying cells reach the skin’s surface and die, their sheer volume causes raised, red plaques covered with white scales.

Psoriasis typically occurs on elbows, knee, and scalp, but it can also affect the torso, palms, and soles of the feet.

To fully understand psoriasis, you need to see what’s happening underneath the skin.

Patients develop psoriasis when their immune system sends faulty signals that tell skin cells to grow too quickly, normal all skin cells.

  • While symptoms may appear on the surface of the skin, what you can see is only part of the story.
  • With normal skin, your body takes about 28 to 30 days to produce new skin cells and shed the old ones.
  • When your body has psoriasis, your immune system is overactive, triggering skin inflammation and causing skin cells to be produced faster than normal. New skin cells are pushed to the skin’s surface in 3 to 4 days instead of the usual 28 to 30.
  • But your body can’t shed the new skin cells at that fast of a rate. So while new skin cells are being produced, the old, dead skin cells pile up on top of each other.
  • As more and more new skin cells are produced rapidly, the old skin cells are pushed to the surface, forming the thick, red, itchy, flaky patches known as plaques.

The exact cause of psoriasis is unknown.

The most common symptoms of psoriasis are:

  • Red, raised inflamed patches of skin.
  • Silver-white scales or plaques on the red patches.
  • Dry skin may crack and bleed.
  • Soreness around patches.
  • Itching and burning sensations around patches.
  • Thick, pitted nails.
  • Painful, swollen joints.

Other forms of psoriasis include:

  • Plaque psoriasis: Characterized by the red and scaly skin on the palms of the hands and/or feet with tiny pustules.
  • Guttate psoriasis: It often starts in childhood or young adulthood, is characterized by small, red spots, mainly on the torso and limbs. Triggers may be respiratory infections, strep throat, tonsillitis, stress, injury to the skin, and use of anti-malarial and beta-blocker medications.
  • Inverse psoriasis: characterized by bright red, shiny lesions that appear in skin folds, such as the armpits, groin area, and under the breasts.
  • Erythrodermic psoriasis: It is characterized by periodic, fiery redness of the skin and shedding of scales in sheets, this form of psoriasis is triggered by withdrawal from a systematic psoriasis treatment, severe sunburn infection, and certain medications and this requires immediate medical treatment because it can lead to severe illness.
  • Pustular psoriasis: is characterized by white pustules surrounded by red skin.

People who suffer from psoriasis know that it is uncomfortable and at times a disfiguring skin disease that can be difficult and frustrating to treat. The condition comes and goes in cycles of remissions and flare-ups over a lifetime. While there are medications and other therapies that can help to clear up the patches of red, scaly, thickened skin that is the hallmark of psoriasis.

Three main treatment options include systemic therapy, topical therapy, and phototherapy.

  • Systemic therapies work through the body system. Some affect the whole system, and they are used for people with moderate to severe psoriasis. They are taken by mouth or by injection and include acitretin, cyclosporine, and methotrexate. One type of systemic therapy is biologic drugs. A biologic is a protein-based drug that is made from living cells grown in a laboratory. Biologics target the specific T cells that are associated with psoriasis.
  • Topical treatment is applied directly to the skin. It is usually the first line of treatment, and the aim is to slow down the growth of skin cells and reduce inflammation. These treatments are available over the counter (OTC) or on prescription and include non-steroids and steroids.
  • Phototherapy is light therapy. The skin is exposed regularly to ultraviolet light, either in the doctor’s office or at home. This is done under medical supervision. Tanning beds are not recommended as a substitute.

AYURVEDA AND PSORIASIS

Ayurveda is based on the premise that good health depends on a healthy body, mind, and spirit. It relies heavily on herbal remedies and living a healthy lifestyle, which includes:

  • A healthy diet
  • Exercise such as yoga
  • Meditation
  • Detoxification

Practitioners of Ayurveda believe that every person has a distinct energy pattern made of three types of energies. These energies are known as doshas, which maintains the body equilibrium.

  • Vata energy, which controls bodily functions.
  • Pitta energy, which controls metabolic functions.
  • Kapha energy, which controls growth in the body.

Ayurveda practitioners believe if your doshas are out of balance, you feel stressed or fall sick. The goal of Ayurveda is to keep your doshas balanced for optimal health, according to these references, psoriasis is considered as the vitiation(fault) of Vata and Kapha.  Accumulation of low potency poisons (Dooshivishas) are the basic pathological changes taking place in the system. Irregular food habits, consumption of foodstuffs that should not be eaten together. (Eg: dairy products with fish), excessive intake of yogurt, black gram, seafood, sour and salted items, etc. This can activate the pathogenesis. Alcohol and tobacco consumption will act as a catalyst here. Ayurveda does emphasize the effect of stress in the pathogenesis of Psoriasis.

The main Ayurveda treatment used to treat psoriasis is Panchakarma therapy. Panchakarma treatments use plant-based remedies and dietary changes. These are meant to detox and purify the body. A vegetarian diet is often recommended.

The Panchakarma treatments include:

  • Consuming medicated ghee, a form of clarified butter.
  • Purging and vomiting.
  • Dripping medicated buttermilk on a person’s head.
  • Covering the entire body with a paste of medicines and mud.
  • Medicated enemas.

The following Ayurvedic herbal remedies are also used to treat psoriasis:

  • Black nightshade juice to reduce inflammation.
  • Garlic and onions to purify the blood.
  • Jasmine flower pastes to relieve itching and reduce inflammation.
  • Guggulu to reduce inflammation.
  • Neem to boost the immune system and purify the blood.
  • Turmeric to reduce inflammation, redness, and swelling.
  • Boswellia (frankincense) to reduce inflammation and support the immune system.

Stress and Psoriasis

Psoriasis can be triggered by stress, both physical and emotional. Meditation and exercise may help reduce stress-related psoriasis flare-ups. Both of these activities are included in Ayurveda treatment plans. Studies and research have shown that the popular Ayurvedic herb, Ashwagandha, also known as “Indian Ginseng,” has anti-stress properties and is a beneficial restorative tonic.

Psoriasis can be treated, and the flare-ups can be painful enough to interfere with your day-to-day life. However, you can lessen the impact of flare-ups by proactively controlling your symptoms and inflammation by following a healthy and disciplined regime. Studies and research have shown that patients with willpower and by following the dos and don’ts have managed to combat this skin disease.

Also, Read about Ayurvedic Treatment for PsoriasisBenefits of Ayurvedic Treatment in Psoriasis

 

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