Psoriasis is a condition where skin cells build up and form scales which are itchy and with dry patches. Psoriasis typically occurs on the knees, elbows, and scalp and it can also affect the palms and soles of the feet. Psoriasis is thought to be an immune system problem.
The cause of psoriasis is not fully understood, but a number of theories exist. Around one-third of people with psoriasis report a family history of this disease, and researchers have identified genetic loci associated with the condition. So psoriasis may sometimes come through genetically.
Other causes in general for the disease include chronic infections, stress, and changes in season and climate. Others include using hot water, scratching the psoriasis skin lesions, cigarette smoking, skin dryness, excessive alcohol consumption and obesity.
A diagnosis of psoriasis is usually based on the appearance of the skin. Skin characteristics typical for psoriasis are scaly, papules, or patches that may be painful and itchy. No special blood tests or diagnostic procedures are needed to make the initial diagnosis.
In addition, peculiar medical signs may be used by medical practitioners to assist with diagnosis. These may include Auspitz's sign (pinpoint bleeding when scale is removed), Koebner phenomenon (psoriatic skin lesions induced by trauma to the skin), and itching and pain localized to papules and plaques.
Treatments are mostly aimed towards removing the scales and stop skin cells from rapid growing, Creams and ointments that you apply to your skin can effectively treat mild to moderate psoriasis. When the disease is more severe, creams are likely to be combined with oral medications or light therapy.
Treatment aspects of Psoriasis according to Ayurveda, aims at the detoxification (elimination of toxins) of the body. It is achieved by "Panchakarma" treatments.
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