Psoriasis is a scaly, chronic, recurring skin disorder. It affects 2-3 per cent of the population; also, men and women equally.
WHAT IS PSORIASIS
The name, psoriasis, originates from the Greek, meaning ‘the state of having the itch,’ the most unpleasant aspect of the disorder.
- There may be burning, hurting and stinging
- There may also be unremitting itchy, scaly and inflamed plaques [red, raised psoriatic patches] that occur on any part of the body and scalp.
WHAT RESEARCH SAYS
Psoriasis can upset the individual’s self-confidence; it can also exert intense emotional pressure on their
Life, relationships, and career, including their loved ones.
Its psychological impact, however, has nothing to do with the physical severity of the disease — even outwardly insignificant psoriasis can cause significant psycho-sociological problems, with suicidal tendencies. Children with psoriasis may find themselves excluded in school and not allowed to take part in swimming, or contact sports.
The medical fact is: psoriasis is neither contagious nor transmissible. One cannot acquire it, for instance, in the swimming pool.
- Stress and emotional distress
- Climate and temperature changes
- Infections such as ‘strep-throat’
- Skin injury — cuts, bruises and so on
- Some conventional medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs [NSAIDs; e.g., nimesulide], among others
- Poor general health
- Severe damage to the immune system — caused by AIDS, or chemotherapy
- Puberty, menopause and pregnancy, due to changes in hormonal levels.
SIGNS & SYMPTOMS
- Red, thickened patches, or lesions [plaques], on the skin. These may vary from small, raindrop-sized lesions to large lesions covering extensive areas
- Discomfort or pain at the site of lesion
- When the disease is active, scratching or cutting the skin may give rise to new lesions. This is called Koebner phenomenon, named after Dr Heinrich Koebner, a German dermatologist
- Nails may be thickened, pitted or ridged
- Swelling and stiffness of joints, when there is joint involvement [psoriatic arthritis].
HOMEOPATHY: SAFE & EFFECTIVE TREATMENT FOR PSORIASIS
Homeopathy views skin disorders, such as psoriasis, as the outer expression of a certain internal bodily dilemma. It understands that psoriasis is essentially the result [external manifestation] of a situation where the body’s immune system is waging a battle and doing a pretty good job in pushing the threat away from major organs, such as the joints.
Clinical research studies conducted in the UK and Germany report that 81-97 per cent of psoriatic cases treated with homeopathic medicines showed distinct improvement, with no side-effects.
A study published in The Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, a conventional medical journal, also reported that psoriasis patients experienced significant improvement in their quality of life [QoL] and a reduction in their psoriasis symptoms with homeopathic medicines and treatment.
- Keep skin moist with a natural moisturiser
- Bathe, but beware; avoid hot water. This can irritate the skin. Use lukewarm water instead
- Get some sun, but with care. The ultraviolet light in sunlight is a proven ‘auxiliary’ treatment, for psoriasis; but, avoid sunburn. The latter can make psoriasis worse
- Quit smoking and alcohol. A study found that people who smoked more than a pack a day were twice as likely to have severe psoriasis than those who smoked half a pack or less. The negative effect of smoking is believed to affect women having psoriasis more than in men. Psoriasis is also more common in people who drink excess alcohol. It affects treatment outcomes badly too
- Consider diet changes. Many people with psoriasis experience improvement after cutting down on foods, such as sugar, white flour, gluten, and caffeine, and by adding flaxseed, or essential fish oils [fish oils] into their daily diet. There is also a possible connection between obesity and psoriasis; dermatologists suggest that a healthy weight could improve the condition, leading to a better quality of life [QoL], with homeopathic treatment.