This chronic condition has a variable nature, rendering it irritating and frustrating to cope with for individuals suffering from psoriasis. Symptoms are unpredictable, appearing suddenly or slowly. Still, the condition is vaguely “cyclical”; symptoms will seem to disappear before flare-ups occur again.
It is possible for symptoms to go into a long-term remission. Though psoriasis seems to have “disappeared,” be wary of any triggers that may elicit flare-ups once more.
Keep in mind that symptoms will vary from individual to individual. Symptoms will be similar, but the severity and duration will differ based upon that individual’s genetics, environment (both emotional and physical) and the type of psoriasis he/she has been diagnosed with. Always consult with your doctor or dermatologist for a proper diagnosis before proceeding any further. Even if your symptoms seem mild enough to be categorized as dry skin, seek the council of a medical professional. Psoriasis can go undetected its first occurrence or during its earlier stages; symptoms appear mild as small, faint, dry patches. Until it worsens, you may not know you have it. Go through the required tests first – even if just as a precaution – in order to help treat and control psoriasis early on.
What Does Psoriasis Look Like?
Psoriasis is characterized by rapid cell reproduction; skin cells mature and shed at an incredulous volume that dead skin cells pile up on the surface – resulting in red-pink areas of thickened, dry skin. Typical of psoriasis are these raised, red plaques covered with white scales.
Symptoms may also appear as small, flattened bumps, large thick plaques of raised skin, red patches, pink patches of mildly dry skin or as large flakes of skin that eventually fall off.
Tiny blood spots may also appear on the skin – a symptom that acts as a special diagnostic sign. Known medically as an Auspitz Sign, these spots are the consequence of pulling off one of many small, dry psoriasis flakes.
Common Symptoms of Psoriasis
Again, symptoms of psoriasis vary depending on both the diagnosed type as well as the external factors present in your environment. Plaque Psoriasis is the most common variety of all psoriasis types. Common symptoms include:
- Plaques of red skin, often covered with loose, silver scales. This is the symptom most commonly associated with psoriasis Such lesions can be extensive, itchy and painful. Cracking and bleeding may occur. In the most severe cases, these patches merge with one another to cover entire surface areas of the body.
- Irritated patches of skin. Skin patches and dots are raised and thick, ranging from pink-red salmon to red in color. Often times these skin patches or skin dots are, like noted in the aforementioned, covered in silvery scales.
- Redness on elbows, knees, trunk and scalp. Though these are the main places in which psoriasis symptoms are seen, symptoms can occur anywhere on the body.
- Change and disfiguration of nails. Thickening, yellow-brown spots, dents and pits in the nail surface, separation of nail from base and crumbling of the actual nail may occur.
- Severe dandruff. Plaques of silver scales or crust may develop as loose flakes constantly shed.
Learn how to take precaution and help relieve and treat symptoms by visiting our section on How to Avoid Psoriasis Flare-Ups & Further Aggravating Skin. For more information and product recommendations for psoriasis skin, return to our Psoriasis Treatment Center.