Dealing with Psoriasis? These Products Can Help
Your dermatologist has diagnosed your itchy, scaly skin patches as psoriasis—now what? Chances are you’ve received adequate information from your skin care provider on how to keep your psoriasis under control, but if you have any remaining questions, like whether or not psoriasis is contagious or if it can spread to other parts of your body, you’ve come to the right place. We’re sharing everything you need to know about psoriasis, including an all-star cleanser—from the L’Oreal portfolio of brands—that can help control the symptoms of psoriasis, below.
Psoriasis Fast Facts:
1. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, approximately 7.5 million people in the United States have psoriasis. If you are one of them, know that you are not alone.
2. Psoriasis can look unsightly, but it is not contagious. You won’t be able to “catch” it by sitting next to someone or by touching their skin.
3. Psoriasis can occur at any age, though—according to Psoriasis.org—it often develops between the ages of 15 and 35. Children under 10 and infants can also develop psoriasis, though it is rarer in the latter group.
4. Unfortunately, there is no way to “cure” psoriasis for good. That said, symptoms—more on that below—can be effectively managed.
What Is Psoriasis?
The Mayo Clinic defines psoriasis (pronounced “sore-EYE-ah-sis”) as a chronic skin condition that speeds up the life cycle of skin cells. These cells, which build up on the skin’s surface at an abnormally fast rate, form the scales and red patches that psoriasis is often characterized by. Some people find that these thick, scaly patches are itchy and painful. The outside of the elbows, knees, or scalp are among the most commonly affected areas, however psoriasis can appear anywhere on the body from your eyelids to your hands and feet.
What Causes Psoriasis?
According to Psorasis.org, the cause of psoriasis isn’t fully understood, but scientists have found that genetics and immune system function contribute to its development. What’s more, there are certain triggers which may cause your psoriasis to start or worsen. These triggers can include but are not limited to infections, injury to the skin (cuts, scrapes, bug bites, even sunburn), stress, smoking, heavy alcohol consumption, and certain medications, according to the Mayo Clinic.
What Are the Symptoms of Psoriasis?
There aren’t any cookie-cutter signs and symptoms for psoriasis, as it can appear differently for everyone. That said, common signs and symptoms can include red patches of skin covered in thick scales, dry, cracked skin that’s prone to bleeding, or itching, burning, or soreness.
How Is Psoriasis Diagnosed?
A dermatologist will typically be able to tell if you have psoriasis just by examining your skin. There are several different types of psoriasis, so your dermatologist may request a skin biopsy to examine underneath a microscope for further clarification.
How Is Psoriasis Managed?
The bad news is that psoriasis is a chronic condition that cannot be cured. That said, most types of psoriasis “come and go.” You may have a flare for a few weeks or months and then have it subside. There are also certain products that can help control the symptoms during a flare. Some can even be picked up over the counter, like CeraVe’s Psoriasis Cleanser and Psoriasis Moisturizing Cream.
CERAVE'S PSORIASIS PRODUCTS
Psoriasis can be frustrating, especially if you’re having trouble finding relief. Knowing how difficult it can be to manage symptoms, many brands have released over the counter products that may help, including one of our favorite brands from the L’Oreal portfolio, CeraVe. Their range of cleansers includes one that targets the symptoms of psoriasis, aptly named Psoriasis Cleanser. Their range of moisturizers also includes one tailor-made for those battling symptoms of psoriasis, named Psoriasis Moisturizing Cream.
All CeraVe products contain essential ceramides, and these two products are no different. Psoriasis Cleanser is a medicated formula that boasts 3 essential ceramides and 2% salicylic acid. It works to cleanse the skin, restore essential moisture, and help control the symptoms of psoriasis. This includes relief of skin itching, scaling, redness, flaking, and irritation associated with psoriasis. What’s more, the formula helps prevent the recurrence of the symptoms of psoriasis. To use, simply apply to affected area one to four times daily, or as directed by a doctor. Start by wetting skin with lukewarm water. Massage the cleanser into skin in gentle circular motions—avoiding contact with the eyes—before rinsing. Follow with the Psoriasis Moisturizing Cream, which can help bring forth relief of skin itching, scaling, redness, flaking, and irritation associated with psoriasis, as well as help prevent the recurrence of symptoms.
Editor’s note: Psoriasis Cleanser contains an alpha hydroxy acid which can increase your skin’s sensitivity to sunlight. During the daytime hours, use a broad-spectrum sunscreen and wear protective clothing when heading outdoors.