All You Need To Know About Scalp Psoriasis

Looking on the bright side, having psoriasis can sometimes make you feel like you’re famous. Except that it doesn’t bring the fame and fortune, but it sure can draw some double-takes from even the politest of people. Jokes aside, having psoriasis can really take a toll on your life, however, the more you know about psoriasis, the better. Most people react like that to psoriasis due to their lack of knowledge about psoriasis. Next time someone says something not so kind about your skin condition, use it as an opportunity to teach them by explaining that one, it is not contagious, and two, it has nothing to do with poor hygiene (duh).

Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune skin disease that can oftentimes affect the scalp too. Scalp psoriasis is a common skin condition that is followed by raised, reddish and scaly patches. The condition may pop up as a single patch, several of them, or it can even affect the entire area of the scalp. Oftentimes, scalp psoriasis can also spread to your forehead, the back of your neck, and even the back or the inside of your ears. We don’t know yet what causes it, but as said earlier, it is not contagious. One of the possible causes that doctors believe is responsible for this skin disorder has something to do with your immune system that causes skin cells to grow too quickly and build up in patches.

scalp psoriasis
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According to the National Psoriasis Foundation (NPF), scalp psoriasis affects more than half of those who have psoriasis, and besides the discomfort that comes along with the condition, those suffering may also experience emotional stress as a result of the visible plaques and flakes on their clothes.

Although the condition affects only two to three percent of the body, it can really affect a person’s quality of life. The bad news is that there is no cure, but the good news is that there are so many ways to manage it. If your black shirt is covered in white flakes and you find your fingers reaching your head to scratch it more often than not, plus with the following symptoms, you might want to check your doctor for an official diagnosis:

– dry scalp

– itching

dandruff-like flaking

– burning or soreness

hair loss

scalp psoriasis
Photo credit: Shutterstock

However, don’t panic. It’s important to note that scalp psoriasis itself does not cause hair loss, but scratching too hard, picking at the spots, and the stress that goes along with the condition may lead to temporary hair loss. Luckily, once your skin clears, your hair usually grows back. When a person has psoriasis, there are certain triggers that make the condition and its symptoms worse. To get a better handle on the situation, it’s important to consider the following triggers:

1. Stress

As said earlier, doctors don’t know what precisely causes psoriasis, but they do know exactly how mental health can affect your immune system. So, it comes as no surprise that stress can make your psoriasis flare up. To make sure you keep your stress in check, try on meditation, a mental exercise, or physical exercise, or whatever floats your boat.

2. Skin injuries

Skin injuries can lead to psoriasis patches that you haven’t had before, and such injuries include sunburns, cuts, bug bites, acupuncture, tattoos, etc. What you can do to prevent these injuries, is: using sunscreen at all times; respond to any skin irritation right away; resist the urge to scratch or pick at your skin.

scalp psoriasis
Photo credit: Shutterstock

3. Infections

Since psoriasis is an autoimmune condition, any change in the immune system can trigger your psoriasis. For instance, if you get a sore throat, or bronchitis, or even an ear infection, they can all contribute to the flare-up of your psoriasis.

4. Weather conditions

Especially this time around during the low temperatures, your psoriasis could get much much worse. To help protect the skin, always wear a hat, scarf, or gloves when you go out. Moreover, skip the hot shower and have a soak in the tub instead. Also, make sure to moisturize your skin more often and use a cool mist humidifier at night.

5. Lifestyle

Last, but not least, your lifestyle choices are crucial when it comes to psoriasis. Studies have shown smoking and drinking alcohol for a person with psoriasis is like pouring gas into the fire. Plus, alcohol can even be dangerous if you take certain drugs for the condition. So, what you have to do, is quit smoking altogether, only drink moderately or not at all, and be cautious of the warning about mixing your medicine with alcohol.


Disclaimer: The contents of this article: text, graphics, images, and other materials contained are strictly for informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical diagnosis, advice, or treatment. Please always seek the advice of a qualified health provider with all the questions that you have related to, or about, a medical condition. 

Since you’re here, you might also want to read:

What Causes Scalp Dryness And Flaking?

Possible Causes And Symptoms Why You Might Have A Dry Scalp

Hair Treatments For Your Dry And Damaged Hair

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