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Triggers of Psoriasis

Nobody would disagree that psoriasis is a complicated skin disorder, aside from being chronic. For quite some time, science has been trying to identify the exact cause of the condition. It could be difficult to fully understand the molecular level of this skin disease.

You probably have heard a few scientific explanations (though those are still initial and preliminary in nature). According to several research efforts, psoriasis is developed when there is mutation in several genes. Such mutations are believed to make the immune system produce antibodies that then attack not just potential disease-causing organisms and entities but also the several skin cells.

Aside from the genetic factors, several environmental causes have been observed to trigger the onset of psoriasis. Be reminded that the following environmental factors just speed up the onset or manifestation of the skin disorder. It would still yet to be studied whether eradicating such factors could effectively help prevent psoriasis in general.

Weather is one environmental factor often identified with psoriasis flare. Some people believe weather is a very strong trigger. Several psoriasis patients observe that rashes caused by the skin disorder worsen during cold, winter months. On the contrary, many observe that rashes caused by psoriasis tend to improve whenever exposed to direct sunlight during summer or warmer months.

Injury skin is identified as a cause for appearance of psoriasis patches. It usually takes about two to six weeks before any skin lesion develops into psoriasis (take note in people with psoriasis). Specific types of skin injuries that are observed to lead to psoriasis flares include abrasion, sunburn, drug and viral rashes, and skin friction due to clothing or rubbing in skin folds like under the breasts and armpits.

Many people could not easily link stress and psoriasis flares. But science has been trying to explain the occurrence. To date, no concrete explanation is yet released, but it has been a common knowledge that psychological stress triggers psoriasis attacks. Patients may also do a little experiment. Whenever there is a sudden stressful happening that affects patients, it is expected that psoriasis rashes tend to worsen. It is the same reason why daily stress is also identified as a trigger. In addition, a research also found that patients with high levels of anxiety are twice less likely to manifest positive response to psoriasis treatment than patients who worry less.

Needless to say, viral and bacterial infection could trigger psoriasis flare. HIV or human immunodeficiency virus increases severity of psoriasis, but does not boost its frequency. In children psoriasis flares are usually triggered by attacks of streptococcal bacteria that causes infections like sore throat, tonsillitis, impetigo, cellulitis, and tooth abscesses.

Lack or low level of vitamins could also be a strong cause of psoriasis. In particular, very low calcium levels in a patient could trigger psoriasis. It is also interesting to note that low vitamin D levels do not cause flare ups, though medications sourced from the vitamin could help effectively treat the skin disorder.

Lastly, it is also logical that several drugs do speed up manifestation of psoriasis. Such treatments (for other diseases) include beta blockers for hypertension, lithium for bipolar disorders, chloroguine for malaria, and indocin for arthritis and gout. Corticosteroids are found to help drastically improve psoriasis but there is a downside: immediately stopping intake of such drugs could effectively trigger psoriasis flares.


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