Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that affects around 125 million people worldwide. The skin condition is characterized by inflammation, itchiness, and red scales with silvery flakes. Many people wonder: is psoriasis hereditary? Read on to find out!
What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a chronic condition that mainly affects the scalp, knees, elbows, hands, and feet. It’s caused by an overactive immune system that causes the skin cells to reproduce faster than usual. The extra build up of skin cells is what causes the red, flaky patches with silvery scales to form.
Symptoms can range from mild to severe and may go through periods of varying degrees of intensity. The most common symptoms include red patches, dry or cracked skin, swollen joints, silvery scales, itchiness, and pitted or ridged nails.
Causes of Psoriasis
Just like eczema, researchers aren’t exactly sure what causes psoriasis. However, it’s believed to be linked to genetic factors and triggers in the environment. Some of the main triggers of psoriasis include alcohol, stress, certain foods, and extreme temperatures.
To prevent flare ups, it’s important to identify what triggers your psoriasis and avoid these triggers as much as possible. Of course, this is often easier said than done, especially as triggers vary from person to person. A great way to determine your food triggers is to try an elimination diet.
The Genetic Link
While psoriasis is considered a hereditary condition, it’s important to note that just because it runs in the family, doesn’t mean a person will necessarily develop the condition. It simply means that a person whose family members have psoriasis may have a higher chance of also developing the condition. Research indicates that there is a 10% chance of developing psoriasis if one parent has the condition. The risk increases to 50% if both parents have it.
Finally, about one third of people diagnosed with psoriasis have a relative with psoriasis. On the other hand, psoriasis can also occur in people with no family history of the disease.
How to Manage Psoriasis Symptoms
There is no cure for psoriasis but there are some natural ways to control flare ups and manage itchy, uncomfortable symptoms. In addition to avoiding psoriasis triggers, check out our tips below:
Keep Skin Moisturized
This Organic Manuka Honey Skin Soothing Cream is perfect for sensitive skin as it’s made with 100% natural ingredients. With no burning or stinging, it helps keep plague and scaling under control and restores moisture to even the driest of skin. Your skin will adore its soft, buttery texture and sweet, honey smell!
Try Dry Wrap Therapy
To prevent irritation and find long-term relief for flare-ups, give dry wrap therapy a try. This easy, at-home treatment involves applying a natural moisturizer, such as the Manuka Honey Cream mentioned above, and covering up with a hypoallergenic sleeve. Made with eco-friendly TENCEL and embedded with zinc oxide, these bandages are completely hypoallergenic. They are perfect for spot-treating areas such as the elbows, knees, arms, and legs. For optimal results, wear overnight or for a minimum of 2 hours. Be sure to apply another layer of cream upon removal.
Wear Psoriasis-Friendly Clothing
When you suffer from psoriasis, it can be difficult to find clothing that doesn’t irritate your skin and exacerbate symptoms. Luckily, we have some psoriasis-friendly clothing that can help reduce itching, improve quality of sleep, and soothe irritation. If you suffer from psoriasis on your back or chest, we recommend this Long Sleeve Shirt for Adults, and this Long Sleeve Shirt for Kids.
These Pants for Adults and Pants for Kids are perfect for those with psoriasis on the knee, leg or thigh. Thanks to their breathable quality and stretchy fit, they’re perfect for wearing underneath regular clothing during the day or overnight as pajamas.