10 Home Remedies for Psoriasis
Psoriasis is a skin condition that causes crusty patches of skin that are covered in silvery scales, usually red and flaky. These patches most commonly appear on the elbows, knees, scalp and the lower back as well, although these patches can occur anywhere on the body. Most people only have small areas of effected skin, and they can sometimes be accompanied by itchiness and soreness.
Psoriasis is mainly caused by a weakening of the immune system attacking healthy skin cells, an auto immune disorder. If a person happens to be sick or fighting with another unrelated infection, the immune system may go into overdrive to battle this issue. This can result in a psoriasis flare-up. Although it’s important to note that psoriasis can be more than just some flaky skin, the most common symptoms of it are1:
* Stiff and swollen joints
* Itching, burning and soreness
* Pitted, thickened nails
* Dry and cracked skin that can bleed
* Small scaly spots, this is most common in children
* Patches of red skin covered with a thick layer of silvery scales
These symptoms can be just a few spots, or major break-outs covering large areas of the body. Psoriasis usually goes through cycles flaring up for a few weeks or months and then going into submission for a while, sometimes even going into remission. Psoriasis is visible and can cause physical and mental discomfort.
Although there are natural and healthy ways to treat psoriasis it’s important to note that if your symptoms are causing you concern, pain, swelling and inhibiting your ability to perform your daily tasks, you should see your doctor right away. Even if you decide to use medication or other medical treatments, you can still use the natural and healthy lifestyle related methods to help treat the cause of your symptoms. Here are 10 home remedies for psoriasis.
#1 – Foods to Avoid There are some foods which should be avoided at all costs, if you want to avoid flare-ups and symptoms associated with psoriasis2.
* Red meat
* Sausage & bacon
* processed meats
* Eggs and egg products
* Gluten based foods
* Processed foods
* Canned foods
* Aubergine (Eggplant)
#2 – Quit or Reduce Alcohol Intake Alcohol deserves a special paragraph of its own as it could be one of the worst things to consume for your symptoms. Alcohol is not only a trigger for psoriasis but can also weaken your immune system which can further add to the severity of flare-ups. It’s important to keep in mind that psoriasis is an autoimmune disorder so it’s best to avoid anything that can weaken your immune system3. If you’re suffering from psoriasis it’s best to avoid alcohol all together, or drink very little.
#3 – Eat These Foods There are also foods which can help you with your psoriasis and which you should include in your diet.
* Brussels sprouts
* Leafy greens
* Dark-coloured fruits
* Fatty fish such as salmon, sardines, trout and cod
* Omega-3 rich oils such as olive, coconut, flaxseed and safflower oil
#4 – Salt Baths Warm baths can be good for the skin, especially for people suffering from psoriasis. Epsom salts and mineral oil can be great for helping with itchiness and irritation. Dead Sea salts are thought to especially help treat psoriasis as the Dead Sea contains a large amount of minerals and has a much higher salt content than any other body of water.
People who bathed in the Dead Sea for 20 minutes per day, three times per week experienced a large improvement in their symptoms of psoriasis. Those who bathed with Dead Sea salts added to their bath water saw even stronger improvements.
#5 – Aloe Vera Aloe vera can be applied directly to the skin to help reduce symptoms of psoriasis, especially irritation. The research on this is mixed, as some studies show that it really helps and some studies show it’s just as effective as a placebo.
But there is a lot of anecdotal evidence from people with psoriasis who use it to treat their own symptoms. Aloe vera is great for the skin and it certainly can’t do any harm. It’s worth giving it a try as a treatment because it seems to work for some people, maybe it can help you too.
#6 – Reduce Stress Stress is a known trigger for psoriasis flare-ups6, so finding ways to reduce your stress levels will go a long way in helping with your symptoms. There are many things that you can do to reduce your stress levels, but it’s a good idea to find an activity or activities that you enjoy. Here are some great ideas when it comes to reducing stress:
* Exercise & sport
* Magnesium supplements
* Mindfulness meditation
* Journaling (writing down your thoughts)
* Spending time with positive people
* Reduce the amount of caffeine you consume
* Keep your home and living spaces tidy and organized
#7 – Use a Humidifier Keeping the air in your home from getting too dry can go a long way in reducing psoriasis symptoms. Adding moisture to the air can help keep irritation and other symptoms at bay. It’s recommended to keep the humidity at 30-50%.
#8 – Avoid Perfumes and Fragrances Most perfumes and scented soaps contain chemicals which are irritants, especially for people suffering from psoriasis. Although perfumes and fragrances can make you smell great, they can also cause some serious inflammation. A good rule of thumb is to avoid using any, body washes, perfumes and colognes, creams and soaps if they’re not labeled ‘for sensitive skin’.
#9 – Get Some UV Light Exposing your skin to ultraviolet light could be great for dealing with your symptoms. UV light can slow down the growth of new skin cells that are triggered by psoriasis. The best way to do this is light therapy which involves exposing your skin to lights that project ultraviolet radiation.
It’s important to note that tanning beds aren’t recommended, and getting too much natural sunlight can also make your symptoms worse. Light therapy should be done under the supervision of a qualified and experienced doctor who specializes in it.
#10 – Tumeric Turmeric is an age-old remedy for a myriad of health issues and illnesses, and it can also help with psoriasis. Turmeric has been shown to minimize flare-ups and it can be taken as a supplement, as a tea or as a spice added to your food. 1.5-3.0 grams of turmeric per day is the amount recommended by the FDA. There are many things you can do to help minimize symptoms and even put them into remission, but it requires some effort and lifestyle changes that need to be stuck with. Avoiding pharmaceuticals and medication if at all possible is a good idea as they only treat the symptoms of psoriasis and not the underlying causes.
Making any big changes in your life is never easy, but following these steps and getting your blood pressure under control naturally is a more healthy and long term alternative than just taking prescription medicine. If your doctor insists on pharmaceuticals then you should still implement these steps into your life, as drugs only treat the symptoms and lifestyle changes can tackle the causes of your health issues.
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Psoriasis References and Psoriasis Information
* Healthline Magazine: https://www.healthline.com/health/psoriasis/food-triggers-for-psoriasis#foods-to-avoid
* National Library of Medicine (Scientific Study): https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5916391/
* Healthline Magazine: https://www.healthline.com/health/psoriasis/food-triggers-for-psoriasis#foods-to-eat
* Healthline Magazine: https://www.healthline.com/health/psoriasis/treat-symptoms-home#avoid-fragrances
* Healthline Magazine: https://www.healthline.com/health/psoriasis/treat-symptoms-home#turmeric