Psoriasis treatment can be broken down into two different types: systemic and topical. Systemic treatments are administered by medical professionals and work to eliminate the underlying causes of psoriasis outbreaks. These are usually necessary in the most severe cases of psoriasis. Topical treatments work to alleviate the symptoms of psoriasis on the skin.
For the purposes of this article, topical treatments can include anything from skin ointments to the use of ultraviolet rays, and even soft light lasers. These treatments are designed to relieve the effects of psoriasis on the skin surface, and to slow the turnover of the skin without creating secondary side effects. In most cases, preference is given to topical treatments because of their relatively low impact with regard to potential side effects.
So what is the best topical psoriasis treatment?
The answer to this question will vary from person to person. Some people will respond positively to creams, sprays and other medicines applied directly to the skin. Among some of the most popular types are corticosteroids, topical retinoids, and salicylic acid.
Corticosteroids work to reduce the amount of inflammation on the skin’s surface to help relieve psoriasis symptoms. These are usually only used during an outbreak to avoid potential side effects. Topical retinoids are usually used to treat acne, but some have now been developed to treat psoriasis. These also work to reduce inflammation. Salicylic acid is now available both by prescription and over the counter. Its principal function is to reduce scaling.
Vitamin derivatives, moisturizers and other botanicals are also combined with these treatments to help reduce the discomfort associated with psoriasis. While moisturizers alone will not relieve symptoms and causes, it can relieve discomfort and itching. Other botanicals and vitamins work in concert with stronger medicines to promote the health of the skin during treatments.
Is phototherapy, or the use of light or lasers, an effective option?
In many cases, the use of light or of lasers can be helpful. Ultraviolet light, the same light emitted by the sun, can be beneficial in the proper doses. While sunburn can exacerbate the symptoms of psoriasis, a proper dose of ultraviolet light serves to eliminate activated T cells, which slows skin turnover.
Lasers are limited to use on areas of skin affected by the psoriasis outbreak. Their use specifically attacks the small blood vessels that cause a buildup of plaque on the skin. They can have side effects. In some instances, bruising may occur on the treated areas. However, they are also capable of being an effective tool to treat the symptoms of psoriasis.
As demonstrated by the large variety of treatment options, such as Psoria, topical therapy can work to eliminate the symptoms of psoriasis. It is important to consult with a medical professional to find a set of solutions that will best work for each individual. While there are many treatment options, psoriasis can be difficult to control without a comprehensive treatment plan. It is also important to find the right mix of treatments to avoid any lingering side effects.