What Psoriasis Treatments are Available

Doctors and dermatologists treat psoriasis with a variety of methods. These methods include diet, oral and topical medications that may or may not include steroids, phototherapy, sun and water therapy, psychological therapy and alternative approaches. The patient’s ability to adjust to the lifestyle and treatment demands of the disease will help to determine the best treatment plan.

This plan will be adjusted as time goes on because not only will the patient age and faces new challenges in his/her life concerning psoriasis but the disease itself usually worsens over time as it is a chronic disease it will be with the patient from the time it first appears and throughout the patient’s lifetime.

Working with your Condition

To manage their disease effectively the patient should learn all that is possible to know about psoriasis including staying up-to-date on new information and new treatments. The patient also needs to have a good working relationship with the doctor that includes trust.

The patient also will need to develop a support group that includes family, friends, community resources, online resources and others who have psoriasis. The treatment plan includes medical care, medications, avoidance of triggers, emotional and physical control methods, and knowledge of the disease.

Alternative Approaches

Alternative methods of treating disease is becoming more popular especially as a way to avoid side-effects from medications. As of January 2007 alternative treatments have not been studied or approved by the Federal Drug Administration to the extent that traditional treatments that include medications have but they do have individual results from past and existing patients that individuals doctors have compiled to support their recommendations to future patients.

Before using any alternative treatment it is important to check with the doctor or dermatologist who is treating your psoriasis as some alternative methods may have an affect on the traditional ones that you are currently doing. Especially check to see that alternative natural or herbal vitamins or supplements have been cleared by your doctor. Certain natural or supplemental preparations may have an adverse reaction with prescribed drugs.

Alternative approaches to psoriasis include: acupuncture, herbals, magnets, and also meditation.

Diet

Diet recommendations for psoriasis patients are based on past history with patients and are subject to the factors in each individual’s type of psoriasis and the triggers that they personally experience. Therefore there is no one psoriasis diet but rather the necessity to tailor a recommendation for diet on an individual basis. Sometimes it is a trial-and-error basis for determining the best diet. The bottom line in any dietary change is that it must not compromise your overall health.

Proper nutrition is important for any individual whether or not they have psoriasis. Anyone with any kind of disease should be especially careful to provide the nutritional needs on a daily basis so that their body’s systems have what is required to not only fight the disease but to maintain overall body health.

It is an agreed upon fact that patients who are overweight tend to notice an improvement in their psoriasis when the weight is returned to a normal level for their body shape, size and for their age.

Foods to Avoid

It is a general consensus among psoriasis patients that limiting or eliminating the following in food items from their diet have shown to be useful:

    Alcohol
    Caffeine
    Gluten containing products
    Products made with white flour
    Sugar

Oral and Topical Medications

Topical medications are given to slow down the cell growth that is more rapid than normal in psoriasis patients. Oral medications are used to combat inflammation and infection.

Phototherapy

The skin is exposed to wavelengths and ultraviolet light during phototherapy and is only done under medical supervision. Consistency must be maintained if phototherapy is to be successful.

Steroid Medications

Steroids are only used for mild to moderate cases of psoriasis. Severe cases of psoriasis alone are not considered to be adequate treatment for severe cases. Steroids are anti-inflammatory agents that reduce swelling and the redness of lesions.

Sun and Water Therapy

Water therapy helps to soften the lesions of psoriasis. Sun therapy is used in monitored daily doses to improve the clarity of the skin.