How I Cured My Plaque Psoriasis: Effective Treatment Strategies

Stanly Lawrence


Plaque Psoriasis


Plaque psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune condition that affects millions worldwide, causing the rapid buildup of skin cells and resulting in the formation of thick, red, scaly patches known as plaques. These plaques can appear anywhere on the body, but are most commonly found on the elbows, knees, scalp, and lower back. Beyond the physical discomfort they bring, plaque psoriasis can also take a significant toll on one's emotional well-being, as the visible nature of the condition can lead to feelings of self-consciousness and isolation. Understanding the complexities of plaque psoriasis and exploring effective treatment options is crucial for those living with this challenging condition.


What is Plaque Psoriasis?

Plaque psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune disorder characterized by the rapid overproduction of skin cells. This excessive cell growth leads to the formation of thick, raised patches of inflamed skin, known as plaques. These plaques are typically red, scaly, and can be itchy or painful. They often appear on the elbows, knees, scalp, and lower back, but can occur anywhere on the body. Plaque psoriasis is not contagious, but it can significantly impact a person's quality of life due to its physical discomfort and potential psychological effects. It is important for individuals with plaque psoriasis to work with healthcare professionals to manage their symptoms and improve their overall well-being.


Causes of Plaque Psoriasis

Genetic Predisposition:

Individuals with a family history of psoriasis are at higher risk of developing the condition.

Specific genetic variations, especially within the HLA-C gene, are associated with an increased susceptibility to psoriasis.

Immune System Dysfunction:

In plaque psoriasis, the immune system mistakenly identifies healthy skin cells as foreign invaders and launches an inflammatory response.

T cells, a type of white blood cell, become overactive, leading to the rapid proliferation of skin cells and the formation of plaques.

Environmental Triggers:

Various environmental factors can exacerbate or trigger psoriasis flare-ups, including stress, infections (such as streptococcal throat infections), and skin injuries (such as cuts, scrapes, or sunburns).

Smoking, heavy alcohol consumption, and certain medications (such as lithium, beta-blockers, and antimalarial drugs) can also worsen symptoms.

Immune Cell Dysfunction:

Dendritic cells, which normally help regulate immune responses, play a role in activating T cells and triggering inflammation in psoriasis.

Abnormalities in other immune cells, such as neutrophils and macrophages, contribute to the inflammatory cascade seen in plaque psoriasis.

Cytokine Imbalance:

Cytokines are proteins involved in cell signaling and inflammation.

In psoriasis, there is an imbalance of pro-inflammatory cytokines, such as tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), interleukin-17 (IL-17), and interleukin-23 (IL-23), which promote inflammation and the proliferation of skin cells.

Lifestyle Factors:

Lifestyle choices, such as smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, obesity, and poor diet, can exacerbate psoriasis symptoms and contribute to systemic inflammation.

Understanding the multifactorial nature of plaque psoriasis helps individuals and healthcare professionals develop comprehensive treatment plans that address both the underlying causes and the symptoms of the condition.


Symptoms of Plaque Psoriasis

The symptoms of plaque psoriasis typically include:


Raised, red patches of skin covered with silvery-white scales, known as plaques, are the hallmark symptom of plaque psoriasis.

These plaques often appear on the elbows, knees, scalp, and lower back, but can occur anywhere on the body.

Itching and Irritation:

The affected skin may feel itchy, irritated, or even painful, especially if the plaques crack or bleed.

Dry, Cracked Skin:

The skin surrounding the plaques may become dry, cracked, and prone to bleeding.

Thickened or Pitted Nails:

Psoriasis can affect the nails, causing them to become thickened, pitted, or ridged.

In severe cases, the nails may become discolored or separate from the nail bed.

Joint Pain and Swelling (Psoriatic Arthritis):

Around 30% of people with plaque psoriasis develop psoriatic arthritis, which causes inflammation, pain, and swelling in the joints.

Psoriatic arthritis can affect any joint in the body, leading to stiffness, reduced range of motion, and joint deformities if left untreated.

Emotional Impact:

Living with visible plaques and the discomfort of psoriasis can have a significant emotional impact.

Many individuals with plaque psoriasis experience feelings of self-consciousness, embarrassment, and depression.

Inverse Psoriasis (Less Common):

Inverse psoriasis affects skin folds, such as those in the armpits, groin, under the breasts, and around the genitals.

It appears as smooth, red patches of skin that may be aggravated by friction and sweating.

Recognizing these symptoms is crucial for prompt diagnosis and effective management of plaque psoriasis. Consulting with a healthcare professional can help individuals develop a personalized treatment plan to alleviate symptoms and improve quality of life.


What is the difference between psoriasis and plaque psoriasis?


1. Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune condition.

2. It results from an overactive immune system, which triggers inflammation and accelerates the growth cycle of skin cells.

3. Psoriasis can manifest in several forms, including plaque psoriasis, guttate psoriasis, inverse psoriasis, pustular psoriasis, and erythrodermic psoriasis.

4. It is characterized by red, inflamed patches of skin covered with silvery scales.

5. Psoriasis can occur anywhere on the body, including the scalp, elbows, knees, and lower back.

Plaque Psoriasis:

1. Plaque psoriasis is the most common form of psoriasis, accounting for approximately 80-90% of cases.

2. It is characterized by the presence of raised, red patches of skin covered with silvery-white scales, known as plaques.

3. Plaques can vary in size and thickness and may be itchy or painful.

4. They commonly appear on the elbows, knees, scalp, and lower back, but can occur anywhere on the body.

5. While plaque psoriasis is a subtype of psoriasis, the term "psoriasis" encompasses all forms of the condition.

In summary, psoriasis is a broad term referring to a chronic autoimmune condition characterized by inflamed patches of skin, while plaque psoriasis specifically describes the most common form of psoriasis, distinguished by the presence of raised, red plaques covered with silvery scales.


Treatments for Plaque Psoriasis

Topical Treatments:

Corticosteroids: These anti-inflammatory creams or ointments help reduce itching, redness, and inflammation.

Vitamin D Analogues: Topical medications containing synthetic forms of vitamin D can slow down the growth of skin cells and reduce scaling.

Retinoids: Topical retinoids derived from vitamin A help normalize skin cell production and reduce inflammation.


UVB Phototherapy: Exposing the skin to ultraviolet B (UVB) light can slow the growth of skin cells and reduce inflammation.

PUVA Therapy: Psoralen plus ultraviolet A (PUVA) therapy combines psoralen, a light-sensitizing medication, with UVA light exposure to slow skin cell growth.

Oral Medications:

Systemic Medications: Oral medications, such as methotrexate, cyclosporine, and acitretin, may be prescribed for severe cases of plaque psoriasis that do not respond to other treatments.

Biologics: Biologic drugs, such as TNF-alpha inhibitors, interleukin inhibitors, and T cell inhibitors, target specific molecules in the immune system to reduce inflammation and slow skin cell growth.

Injectable Treatments:

Biologics: Some biologic medications are administered via injection, either subcutaneously or intravenously, and are typically reserved for severe or treatment-resistant cases of plaque psoriasis.

Lifestyle Modifications:

Moisturizing: Keeping the skin well-hydrated with emollients and moisturizers can help reduce dryness, itching, and scaling.

Avoiding Triggers: Identifying and avoiding triggers, such as stress, certain medications, infections, and skin injuries, can help prevent psoriasis flare-ups.

Healthy Diet: Eating a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and omega-3 fatty acids may help reduce inflammation and support overall skin health.

Alternative Therapies:

Natural Remedies: Some individuals find relief from plaque psoriasis symptoms by using natural remedies, such as aloe vera, coconut oil, oatmeal baths, and herbal supplements like turmeric or fish oil.

Mind-Body Therapies: Practices like meditation, yoga, and acupuncture may help reduce stress and improve overall well-being, potentially reducing psoriasis symptoms.

Complementary Treatments:

In addition to medical treatments, complementary therapies such as acupuncture, massage, and aromatherapy may help manage stress and improve overall quality of life for individuals with plaque psoriasis.

It's essential for individuals with plaque psoriasis to work closely with healthcare professionals to develop a personalized treatment plan that addresses their specific needs and concerns. Regular follow-up appointments and open communication with healthcare providers can help ensure effective management of the condition.


Home Remedies for Plaque Psoriasis

While home remedies may not cure plaque psoriasis, they can help alleviate symptoms and complement medical treatments. Here are some home remedies that individuals with plaque psoriasis may find helpful:


Regularly applying moisturizers can help soothe dry, itchy skin associated with plaque psoriasis. Opt for fragrance-free, hypoallergenic moisturizers to minimize irritation.

Oatmeal Baths:
Oatmeal Baths

Adding colloidal oatmeal to warm bathwater and soaking for 15-20 minutes can help relieve itching and inflammation. Oatmeal has anti-inflammatory properties that can soothe irritated skin.

Aloe Vera:
Aloe Vera

Applying aloe vera gel directly to plaques can help moisturize the skin, reduce redness, and promote healing. Choose pure aloe vera gel without added ingredients like alcohol or fragrance.

Coconut Oil:
Coconut Oil

Coconut oil has moisturizing and anti-inflammatory properties that can help soften plaques and reduce itching. Apply virgin coconut oil to affected areas after bathing or as needed throughout the day.

Apple Cider Vinegar:
Apple Cider Vinegar

Diluting apple cider vinegar with water and applying it to plaques with a cotton ball may help reduce inflammation and itching. It's essential to patch-test first and avoid using on open wounds or sensitive areas.

Capsaicin Cream

Capsaicin, the active component in chili peppers, has been shown to help reduce itching and inflammation when applied topically. Use caution, as it may cause a burning sensation initially.


Consuming turmeric, either in capsule form or as a spice in cooking, may help reduce inflammation associated with plaque psoriasis. Turmeric contains curcumin, a compound with anti-inflammatory properties.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids:

Including foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines), flaxseeds, and walnuts, in the diet may help reduce inflammation and improve skin health.

Stress Reductio:

Practicing stress-reduction techniques, such as mindfulness meditation, yoga, deep breathing exercises, or progressive muscle relaxation, can help reduce psoriasis flare-ups triggered by stress.

Dietary Changes:

Some individuals find relief from psoriasis symptoms by following an anti-inflammatory diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats while minimizing processed foods, sugary snacks, and alcohol.

It's essential to consult with a healthcare professional before trying any new home remedies, especially if you are currently undergoing medical treatment for plaque psoriasis. While these home remedies may provide relief for some individuals, they may not be suitable for everyone, and they should not replace prescribed medical treatments.


Lifestyle Changes for Plaque Psoriasis

Making certain lifestyle changes can help manage plaque psoriasis and reduce the frequency and severity of flare-ups. Here are some lifestyle modifications that individuals with plaque psoriasis may find beneficial:

Maintain a Healthy Diet:

Consume a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats.

Limit processed foods, sugary snacks, and alcohol, which can contribute to inflammation and exacerbate psoriasis symptoms.

Stay Hydrated:

Drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep your skin hydrated and improve overall skin health.

Avoid Triggers:

Identify and avoid triggers that may exacerbate psoriasis symptoms, such as stress, smoking, heavy alcohol consumption, and certain medications.

Protect your skin from injuries, infections, and excessive sun exposure, as these can trigger psoriasis flare-ups.

Manage Stress:

Practice stress-reduction techniques, such as mindfulness meditation, deep breathing exercises, yoga, or tai chi, to help reduce stress levels.

Engage in activities that promote relaxation and well-being, such as spending time in nature, listening to music, or pursuing hobbies you enjoy.

Maintain a Healthy Weight:

Aim to achieve and maintain a healthy weight through regular exercise and a balanced diet.

Obesity is associated with an increased risk of psoriasis and may worsen symptoms, so maintaining a healthy weight is essential.

Regular Exercise:

Incorporate regular physical activity into your routine, such as walking, swimming, cycling, or yoga.

Exercise can help reduce inflammation, improve circulation, and boost overall well-being.

Quit Smoking:

If you smoke, quitting can improve psoriasis symptoms and reduce the risk of developing psoriasis-related complications, such as psoriatic arthritis.

Limit Alcohol Intake:

Moderate or eliminate alcohol consumption, as alcohol can trigger psoriasis flare-ups and interact with certain psoriasis medications.

Get Adequate Sleep:

Prioritize getting enough sleep each night, as sleep deprivation can weaken the immune system and trigger psoriasis flare-ups.

Follow a Skincare Routine:

Use mild, fragrance-free skincare products and avoid harsh soaps or cleansers that can irritate the skin.

Moisturize regularly to keep the skin hydrated and prevent dryness and itching.

By incorporating these lifestyle changes into your daily routine, you can help manage plaque psoriasis and improve your overall quality of life. It's essential to work closely with your healthcare provider to develop a comprehensive treatment plan that addresses your individual needs and concerns.


FAQs about Plaque Psoriasis

How do you permanently get rid of plaque psoriasis?

There is currently no known cure for plaque psoriasis. However, various treatments, including medications, lifestyle changes, and home remedies, can help manage symptoms and reduce flare-ups. Working closely with healthcare professionals to develop a personalized treatment plan is essential for effectively managing plaque psoriasis.

What is the fastest way to cure plaque psoriasis?

The fastest way to manage plaque psoriasis is through a combination of topical treatments, phototherapy, and oral medications prescribed by a healthcare professional. However, individual response to treatment varies, and it may take time to find the most effective approach for each person.

How long does plaque psoriasis last?

Plaque psoriasis is a chronic condition that typically lasts for a lifetime, with symptoms fluctuating between periods of remission and flare-ups.

What is the root cause of plaque psoriasis?

The root cause of plaque psoriasis is believed to be a combination of genetic predisposition and immune system dysfunction.

What are the dangers of plaque psoriasis?

The dangers of plaque psoriasis include increased risk of developing other health conditions such as psoriatic arthritis, cardiovascular disease, and depression.

Does plaque psoriasis ever go away?

Plaque psoriasis typically does not go away permanently, but symptoms can be managed effectively with treatment.

Is sunlight good for plaque psoriasis?

Yes, sunlight can be beneficial for plaque psoriasis as it helps to slow down the growth of skin cells and reduce inflammation.

What are the early stages of plaque psoriasis?

The early stages of plaque psoriasis typically involve the appearance of small, red patches of skin, which may be itchy or mildly irritated.


Bottom Line

In conclusion, living with plaque psoriasis can present significant challenges, both physically and emotionally. However, with proper management and treatment, individuals can find relief from symptoms and improve their quality of life. From topical treatments and phototherapy to lifestyle modifications and home remedies, there are various options available to help manage plaque psoriasis effectively. It's essential for individuals with plaque psoriasis to work closely with healthcare professionals to develop a personalized treatment plan that addresses their specific needs and concerns. By taking proactive steps to manage the condition, individuals can regain control of their skin health and live well beyond plaque psoriasis.

Also Refer:

Scalp Psoriasis: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options 


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