Debunking Psoriasis Myths

Psoriasis manifests itself as scaly, itchy and dry patches of the skin and scalp. Because research for psoriasis is still on-going to fully understand it, there are a lot of myths and misinformation regarding it’s nature. Here are five myths about psoriasis that are outright not true:

  • MYTH: Psoriasis only affects the skin – This disease is actually more than skin deep. Some of the lesser known symptoms include  thickened or pitted nails, swollen and stiff joints. The scaly appearance of this condition actually feels worse than they look. They can cause constant itching, burning, soreness and even bleeding in some cases. To add to that, those who suffer from psoriasis are at a higher risk of developing conditions like stroke, heart disease, and diabetes.
  • MYTH: Psoriasis is a result of what you’re doing to your skin – It is actually considered as an autoimmune disease. This means that your immune system attacks your body, for unknown reasons. Nothing you do, like not showering enough (or too much), or changing your lotion or your cleanser would have triggered it. Environmental factors however do contribute to a flare-up, like with infections or injuries to your skin.
  • MYTH: This condition is temporary – A lot of dermatologists actually consider psoriasis more as a disease than just a condition. There is no current cure for it, and it is chronic, meaning it can happen all throughout your life. The best thing doctors can do is to help patients manage the symptoms through different treatments.
  • MYTH: Psoriasis in contagious – This is entirely false. Psoriasis has been stigmatized because of the appearance of the scaly skin and bleeding plaques on those who suffer from it, but it’s not something that can be caught through skin to skin contact. People who have psoriasis can and do freely interact with other people without having to worry about passing it on to someone else.
  • MYTH: Nothing can be done about Psoriasis – Yes, there is no cure currently, but your dermatologist can help you manage your symptoms. There are a variety of different treatments that can be discussed with your doctor, from topical creams to pills that can help.