If you are one of the many who are suffering from psoriasis then it is just understandable that you might feel you are cursed. The skin condition is chronic, meaning it recurs when exposed to triggers like stress, weather condition and the likes. There is no known cure which definitely intensifies the burden of the patient enduring it.
Because of the skin disease’s prevalence, questions like “what is psoriasis?” and “is psoriasis contagious?” are fairly common. Let us answer these frequently asked questions one by one.
1. What is psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a skin affliction that is classified as one of the auto-immune diseases. Patients suffering from it have this abnormal body condition wherein there is an excessive reproduction of skin cells. This overproduction results to different symptoms that can be distinguished from mild to severe.
2. Is psoriasis contagious?
Psoriasis is non-contagious skin disease and non-infectious although no definite cause has been identified with its occurrence, it is widely known that genetics played a great part in it.
3. How can it be diagnosed?
Most often, medical doctors rely on the appearance of the affliction. Plaque psoriasis, one of the most common types of the skin disease, has a distinct silvery-white tone. In order to validate the findings, some tests, like skin biopsy or scraping, are ordered to be done.
4. What are the types of psoriasis and what are its symptoms?
There are 7 known variants of psoriasis and each can be identified through its appearance and other characteristics. These seven are:
a. Plaque psoriasis
It is the most common and most prevalent among the types. Approximately 8 out 10 psoriasis patients are categorized under this.
It manifests symptoms like the appearance of inflamed, raised and red skin with plaques of silvery-white color. These rashes can sometimes be itchy and painful. In severe cases, the skin may also crack and bleed.
b. Nail Psoriasis
Simply put, this type occurs and affects the fingernails and toes. It shows pitting, abnormal discoloration and growth.
c. Gluttate Psoriasis
This is less common than plaque psoriasis but like it, it also manifests thinner skin lesions. It is usually triggered by a respiratory illness and sometimes goes away on its own unless the patient is still exposed to the trigger.
d. Inverse Psoriasis
It is so named because the lesions, although bright and red, are smooth and shiny. It usually appears in areas under skin folds like armpits, groin areas, buttocks and genitals. They are prone to exacerbation because of exposure to sweat and constant rubbing
e. Pustular Psoriasis
This type although less common is more serious. It is characterized by pus-filled skin bumps with redness surrounding it. It needs medical attention since it can trigger secondary ailments like fever, chills, muscle weakness, and nausea among others.
It can be triggered by a number of factors like taking and sudden withdrawal of systemic medications, UV Light overexposure, pregnancy, stress and certain kinds of chemicals.
f. Scalp Psoriasis
Just like the nail psoriasis, this is aptly named because of the appearance of red and white scales on patient’s scalp.
g. Erythrodermic Psoriasis
This is the least common type of the dreaded skin disease and positively the most severe. If you see a patient suffering from this you will definitely ask that previous question – “is psoriasis contagious?” because of its intimidating appearance.
It may not be contagious but it surely needs an immediate medical attention. The body is covered all over by redness and severe itchiness. This condition causes one to have an increased heart rate and a change in body temperature.
Other than these, it can also cause serious complications like protein and fluid loss; infection; pneumonia; and congestive heart failure.
In any onset of a disease, it is wise to seek the advice of your medical doctor. This will ensure that you will get adequate treatment and medication appropriate to your skin condition.