Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that affects millions of people. This skin disorder manifests itself as itchy, scaly patches of skin. The patches may be red or pink and may be raised. Severe dandruff may occur, and some people suffer from aching joints and sore muscles. Symptoms may come on over a period of time, but sudden outsets also occur. In extreme cases, the person suffering from psoriasis may also suffer from emotional problems such as depression, so treatment is essential.
What Can Trigger a Psoriasis Outbreak?
A number of things can trigger a psoriasis outbreak, and they aren't the same for everyone. When you get an insect bite or have an injury that scrapes your skin, sometimes that's all it takes to cause an outbreak. Some people with weaker immune systems are more prone to infections such as strep or upper respiratory infections. If you are one of these people, it's important to try to stay as healthy, because these illnesses can also trigger outbreaks.
If you are prescribed beta-blockers for high blood pressure or steroids, you should tell your doctor you have psoriasis. Stress can cause a variety of health problems, including psoriasis outbreaks. People who frequently suffer from stress tend to drink more alcohol than usual; unfortunately, alcohol is another thing that can create a psoriasis flare-up.
How Can Triggers Be Avoided?
There are ways to avoid behaviors and substances that may trigger psoriasis outbreaks. Avoid insect bites and skin injuries by wearing insect spray, pants, and a long-sleeved shirt if you're going to be working outside. It's also a good idea to wear gardening gloves.
If you aren't feeling well and suspect that you may have an infection, you should see your doctor to get treatment immediately.
Medications that tend to cause psoriasis outbreaks should be avoided. Your doctor can prescribe medications that are appropriate for your condition. If stress is a problem for you, you may want to consider meditation or yoga. If you commonly have several alcoholic drinks a week, cutting down may reduce your psoriasis outbreaks.
Triggers of psoriasis outbreaks aren't the same for everyone. Whether you suffer from a severe case or occasional outbreaks that aren't as serious, it's important to let your doctor know that you have the condition and follow suggestions on avoiding outbreaks.
Options for treatment include topical ointments; phototherapy, which involves exposing skin to ultraviolet light; systemic medications; biologics; and alternative or complementary medicine. A combination of therapies may be effective, although only your doctor can prescribe the most effective treatment option for you.