Psoriasis

By: Taylor Turner

What is it?

Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune disease that mainly affects the skin. It is non-contagious. A reddish, scaly rash - often referred to as red, scaly patches - is commonly found over the surfaces of the scalp, around or in the ears, the elbows, knees, navel, genitals and buttocks.

Are there different types?

There are five official types of psoriasis: plaque, guttate, inverse, pustular, and erythrodermic, psoriasis.There are also subcategories of psoriasis types, which appear differently depending on where it is located on the body.

How does it occur?

It develops when a person's immune system sends faulty signals that tell skin cells to grow too quickly. New skin cells form in days rather than weeks. The body does not shed these excess skin cells. The skin cells pile up on the surface of the skin, causing patches of psoriasis to appear.

Treatments?

Topical treatments for psoriasis include: Salicylic acid . Some doctors recommend salicylic acid ointment, which smoothes the skin by promoting the shedding of psoriatic scales. Using salicylic acid over large areas of skin, however, may cause the body to absorb too much of the medication, leading to side effects.
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Contagious?

No, Scientists know that certain genes are linked to psoriasis. So if someone in your family has the condition, you may have the same genes and be more likely to get it yourself.