Psoriasis is a disorder that affects the skin and joints. It is non-contagious in nature. It is characterized by the appearance of red scaly patches on the skin surface. The scaly patches that are caused by psoriasis are referred to as psoriatic plaques. In some cases, the skin on the affected area gets inflamed as well.
Excessive skin production is yet another symptom of this disorder. Skin rapidly gets accumulated at these affected sites and appears to be silvery-white in color. Though plaques fare generally found on the skin of the elbows and knees, they also make their appearance on the scalp and genitals.
Once occurred, psoriasis is likely to recur. However, the severity of the disorder varies during each attack. Sometimes, it occurs in the form of minor localized patches and in certain other cases, the whole body gets covered by plaques. Psoriatic nail dystrophy refers to that sort of this disorder which frequently affects fingernails and toenails. Psoriatic arthritis refers to that condition in which psoriasis result in the inflammation of the affected joints. It is estimated that less than fifteen percent of the total population affected with psoriasis have psoriatic arthritis.
The real cause of psoriasis remains unknown, but it is found that heredity plays a major role in the transmission of this disorder. Certain factors such as stress, excessive alcohol consumption, and smoking aggravate psoriasis. Because of its chronic recurrent nature, it remains a challenge to cure this disorder completely by treatment.
It is based on the skin appearance that psoriasis usually gets diagnosed.
Depending on the extent of damage caused and location of outbreaks, individuals suffer from severe physical discomfort. Some people experience itching and pain also as part of psoriasis.
Individuals with psoriasis often feel bad about their appearance and thereby fear of social rejection. In such case, psychosexual imbalances are resulted. Psychological distress often leads to increased depression and mental isolation.