Psoriasis is a very common chronic skin condition, often causing severe symptoms that can significantly affect an individual’s life. And yet, there are so many people that know little to nothing about it.
That’s why the National Psoriasis Foundation (NPF) has designated every August as National Psoriasis Awareness Month.
What is National Psoriasis Awareness Month?
National Psoriasis Awareness Month aims to spread increased understanding and education about psoriasis in an effort to both increase efforts towards a cure and make its sufferers feel less alone.
What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a non-contagious, chronic inflammatory skin disorder that causes raised, scaly patches (called “plaques”) that vary in size and severity. These patches commonly occur on the elbows, knees, lower back, and scalp, and vary from mild to severe.
Most people with psoriasis experience their first episode, or flare-up, between the ages of 15 and 35 years old. From there, the condition typically cycles through periods of remission and flare-ups.
What Causes Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is caused by an accelerated skin growth rate, resulting in skin cells multiplying ten times faster than usual. Because the cells multiple and mature so quickly, the skin is not able to “keep up” as it sheds dead skin cells at a normal rate. Therefore, the excess cells accumulate into raised, red patches.
Although the biological cause of psoriasis is not yet fully understood, we know that triggers can include stress, diet, weather, and allergies.
Is There a Cure for Psoriasis?
Unfortunately, a cure for psoriasis does not yet exist.
However, various treatment options can significantly improve psoriasis symptoms, such as:
- Topical skin treatments
- Systemic treatments (prescription medications)
- Phototherapy (light therapy)
- Integrative medicine
Psoriasis treatments are not necessarily “one size fits all,” so it’s important that individuals work closely with a trusted dermatologist to achieve the best possible results.
How You Can Participate in National Psoriasis Awareness Month
Whether you or a loved one suffers from psoriasis, there are many ways to get involved with Psoriasis Awareness Month.
- Post on social media to share your personal story of psoriasis, using hashtags such as #PsoriasisAwareness or #PsoriasisWarrior
- Share accurate informational resources from trusted sources such as the NPG, American Academy of Dermatology Association, or the National Institutes of Health
- Participate in psoriasis research, either by signing up for a registry or clinical trial
- Donate to a psoriasis organization to help further research efforts
- Sign up for in-person or virtual psoriasis events, including those hosted by the NPF
Learn More About Managing the Symptoms of Psoriasis
Do you have psoriasis? Although there is not yet a cure, our team of Phoenix dermatology experts can help you effectively manage the symptoms with a broad range of treatment options. Together, we can find a tailored treatment plan that suits your unique needs, helping to minimize or eliminate your symptoms.
For more information about psoriasis treatment in the Phoenix area, contact Affiliated Dermatology today.