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Understanding Scalp Psoriasis
Scalp psoriasis is characterized by reddish, raised, and scaly patches in the scalp. The rashes are well-defined and are going down to the neck or in some cases in the ear front. In some cases, a small area is affected (usually the upper neck or the back of head0, while is any instances, the entire scalp is covered by rash. Scales appear white and very thick with tight attachment to the hair. In severe cases, hair in the affected area gets thinner.
Often, scalp psoriasis is mistaken for seborrheic dermatitis, which is caused by a specific type of yeast. Biopsied portions of the scalp could look similar in both conditions. However, scalp psoriasis’ patches appear more defined compared to patches brought about by seborrheic dermatitis. Of course, patients prefer seborrheic dermatitis, whish is easier to treat and is causing less discomfort, than scalp psoriasis.
Several symptoms are identified with scalp psoriasis. These include: reddish plaque, silvery-white scales, flakes that appear like extraordinary dandruff, drying scalp, severe itching, and even temporary hair loss, which results from intense and frequent scratching.
It is important to note that about half of all people suffering from the skin disorder are susceptible or at risk to developing scalp psoriasis. Experts believe that most psoriasis patients experience even at least a single episode of the scalp disorder during an entire flare. Diagnosis is usually taken through dermatologists’ visual examination. In some cases, biopsy should be conducted (especially to differentiate the condition from seborrheic dermatitis).
Needless to say, this kind of psoriasis is significantly affecting the quality of lived of patients. Chronic types could last for years. In some cases, scalp psoriasis flares and not other skin psoriasis areas, and vice versa. Unexpected and long-lasting flare ups are most disliked by any sufferer. Many patients even complain about the embarrassment caused by flares and their uncontrollable itching. Sleep deprivation is of course common.
Is the condition treatable? There are many treatments available but not all are guaranteed to bring about favorable results. Main goals of available treatments are to control flare ups and to bring relief from symptoms. The most common available treatments are topical (applied to surface). Using topical medications could be a bit challenging because the treatments should be applied directly to the scalp and not the hair. In this regard, application could take time and could test anyone’s patience.
Phototherapy is applied if topical treatments fail. This is done through the use of laser or special light sources. Specifically, excimer laser is identified as most effective in treating scalp psoriasis.
If scalp psoriasis is most unwanted, there is a light of good news. No matter how severe psoriasis flares could get, scalp psoriasis does not last as long as other flares. Dermatologists remind sufferers that with their assistance and proper application of prescribed treatment, the condition could be easily and quickly curtailed in just a matter of hours of days.
Though the condition may recur, discomfort could be experienced very shortly.
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