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Causes of Psoriasis

The article will delve into factors that may increase the risk of developing psoriasis in a person.

  • 11 Oct 2023
  • 2 min read
  • 62 views

Psoriasis is a disease that causes inflammation due to the dysfunctioning of the immune system in the body. Psoriasis may show visible symptoms that include discoloured skin covered with scales. These thick, scaly areas are called plaques; raised plaques are also formed that may look different for different skin types. The skin cells accumulate on the surface of the skin that results in psoriasis plaques which cause itch, burn, and sting on any part of the body but most commonly found on the elbows, knees, and scalp. Let us look at the causes of psoriasis.

 

How is Psoriasis Caused?

The exact cause of psoriasis is unknown, but studies show it is related to an overactive immune system, in which a person’s immune system gets attacked by healthy skin cells by mistake, causing inflammation and impacting other organs and tissues in the body. Moreover, scientists do not fully understand what triggers the faulty immune cell activation against its cells, but they know that its activation involves a combination of genetics and environmental factors.

Some external factors that may increase the risk of developing psoriasis in a person include:

Problems with the immune system

One of the main types of cells of the immune system is called a T-cell which usually travels through the body to detect and fight invading germs, such as bacteria. But in the condition of psoriasis, the immune cells start to attack healthy skin cells causing the deepest skin layer to produce new skin cells within 3-4 days, which usually takes a month. This triggers the immune system to produce more T-cells. However, the exact reason for this problem is not known but certain factors like genes and environmental factors may play a role.

Genetics

People living with psoriasis are also known to have a family history of this condition, and researchers have pinpointed some genes that may contribute to its development. Different combinations of these genes may likely make people more prone to developing the condition.

However, having these genes does not necessarily mean a person will develop psoriasis and most of them play an important role in the function of the immune system which during the condition of psoriasis activates the immune response.

Other reasons for psoriasis:

In case of early psoriasis, the symptoms may go unnoticed but later get triggered with involvements of certain factors like:

  • An injury to the skin like a cut, scrape, insect bite or sunburn; often known as the Koebner response.
  • Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol
  • Smoking
  • Stress
  • Hormonal changes in women during puberty and menopause
  • Certain medicines like anti-malarial, and anti-inflammatory including ibuprofen, and ACE inhibitors
  • Throat infections usually occur in children and young adults and sometimes trigger a form of psoriasis called guttate psoriasis which develops after a streptococcal bacteria infects the throat that may later develops into psoriasis.
  • Some other immune disorders, such as HIV, heart-related disease, malaria or mental health problems

 

Conclusion

Psoriasis is a chronic skin disease which in certain people can cause significant emotional and physical distress. Psoriasis is caused by a number of different factors. As there isn’t a way to entirely prevent psoriasis a right treatment can be given in a timely manner to patients living with psoriasis. Your health insurance plan might offer you coverage that allows you treat such conditions. One can reduce the risk by following their healthcare provider’s treatment, living a healthy lifestyle, taking good care of the skin and avoiding triggers that can cause an outbreak of symptoms. Understanding the causes of psoriasis can help in better managing this condition.

The above blog aims to provide general information about health and related topics. Any information provided in this blog, website or in any linked materials is not intended and should not be considered, or used as a substitute for any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It is important that you contact your Doctor before starting a new medicine or health regime.

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