Psoriasis is a common long-term skin without a cure. It causes rashes and itching on the skin. It appears as scaly patches especially on the knees, elbows, trunk and scalp. The common causes of the condition include infections, cuts, burns or allergic reaction to certain medications. According to recent studies, about 125 million people worldwide have psoriasis and about 8 million are US citizens. August is observed as psoriasis Awareness Month to create awareness regarding this skin condition.
Though it is an uncurable skin condition, proper and timely treatment for can ease the symptoms. Here are some simple remedies that may provide relief for psoriasis.
Home Remedies for Psoriasis
- Epsom Salt Baths
Adding Epsom salt or ground oatmeal into warm, running bath water can reduce itching as well as other skin irritations. Epsom salt is a storehouse of minerals that can reduce the effects of psoriasis. Clinical trials showed that people with psoriasis who had a salt bath for 20 minutes a day for three weeks experienced significant improvement in their psoriasis symptoms. Likewise, some people with psoriasis have reported that oatmeal eased itching and redness from the condition.
Other items can that can be added to warm bath water soothe the itching and irritation of the skin include mineral oils, milk, and olive oil. As hot water can irritate the skin, bathe only in warm water.
- Oregon Grape
Formally known as Mahonia aquifolium, this is an antimicrobial herb in the barberry family. Studies have found that a cream made from the extract of this herb is effective against mild to moderate psoriasis. The extract was also found to be safe and well-tolerated.
- Maintain a Healthy Diet
Maintaining a healthy diet can help in managing psoriasis to a certain extent. Eliminating certain items and including certain others in your diet chart could help to keep this skin condition under control. Limiting the intake of certain food items such as red meat, saturated fats, refined sugar, carbohydrates and alcohol can reduce the after effects of psoriasis caused by these food items. Likewise, including cold water fish, seeds, nuts, and Omega-3 fatty acids can reduce inflammation and also help in managing other symptoms of psoriasis.
- Stay Hydrated
Dry skin can cause a psoriasis flareup. To prevent this, stay hydrated by drinking at least 8 glasses of water. Your body should contain at least 60% water to prevent dryness. If it is the winter season, use a humidifier. Moisturizers for sensitive skin can keep your skin supple and moisturized, but make sure the ingredients are not those that aggravate psoriasis.
- Get Some Sunshine
Though too much exposure to sun would cause skin damage, getting some sunshine can improve the appearance of the skin. The sun’s UVB (Ultraviolet B) rays slow down the growth of skin cells that cause psoriasis. However, as sunburn worsens psoriasis, use sunblock SPF30 when you step out. On the other hand, sun exposure not a suitable remedy for all people. Some medications make the skin sensitive to sun. People with a family history of cancer should stay out of the sun. Discuss this strategy with your doctor before trying it.
Though psoriasis cannot be cured, but the symptoms can be managed with proper skin care and treatments.