Can psoriasis go away?
Psoriasis is a skin disease that develops due to changes in genetic makeup, and most often, it is passed from your parents (hereditary). It may also occur due to changes in the immune system, autoimmune response, in which your own antibodies start attacking the cells of your body.
Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory condition that has no definite cure and only the symptoms can be managed. At times, treatment can make psoriasis symptoms disappear and give you clear skin for a while.
This symptom-free period is referred to as “remission.” A remission is followed by the reappearance of the symptoms and this period is known as “relapse.” A remission can last for months or years ranging from one to 12 months.
The course of psoriasis is unpredictable, varying considerably among patients, so it's impossible to know if you will have a remission and how long it will last.
How can I treat psoriasis naturally?
Various medications and therapies are available that your doctor will prescribe. However, along with this, some natural foods and certain lifestyle changes can reduce the severity of psoriasis and delay its relapses. This will help treat psoriasis naturally and get rid of psoriasis symptoms faster than with medication alone.
- Eat lots of fruits and vegetables: It has been observed that eating habits influence skin health. Certain anti-inflammatory foods can slow down the inflammation in psoriasis and reduce its recurrence. These foods are usually rich in antioxidants like vitamin E, vitamin C, and selenium. These include:
- Fruits and veggies (berries, cherries, and green leafy vegetables)
- Fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids (salmon, sardines)
- Herbs and spices (thyme, sage, cumin, and ginger)
- Olive oil, seeds, and nuts
Avoid foods that can make psoriasis worse. These include:
- Processed foods and refined sugars
- Fatty portions of red meat
- Milk and certain milk products (curd, cheese, cottage cheese)
- Limit your alcohol intake: Some research studies have observed that patients who are addicted to alcohol do not respond to psoriasis treatments. Stopping alcohol improves the skin condition in some patients with psoriasis.
- Lose weight: People who are overweight or obese have a greater chance of getting psoriasis, and their symptoms tend to be worse. Studies suggest that your skin may get better if you shed extra pounds.
- Try a gluten-free diet: It is estimated that up to 25% of people who have psoriasis are sensitive to gluten. Some studies have shown that cutting down on gluten-containing products (e.g., wheat, barley, rye) may help improve psoriasis.
- Do yoga and meditation: Stress has been seen to be one of the major triggers for flare-ups of psoriasis. Yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises can help you manage your stress and subsequently, psoriasis.
Before going for the above dietary and lifestyle modifications, discuss with your doctor about which ones will work better for you.
Can psoriasis be cured by Ayurveda?
Few studies have shown that Ayurvedic therapies have benefitted patients with psoriasis. Ayurvedic treatment can reduce the frequency of relapses. But the problem is that there isn’t enough research on Ayurvedic medicine for psoriasis or most other health conditions.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has allowed the use of Ayurveda as a complementary and alternative form of therapy, but not as a replacement for the conventional (modern) system of medicine. A survey shows that about 240,000 American adults use Ayurvedic medicine.
Although most of the Ayurvedic treatments are safe, some Ayurvedic products have shown to interact with modern medicines, and some of them may contain heavy metals like mercury, lead, or arsenic in toxic amounts.
The Ayurvedic professionals claim these metals to be made nontoxic through certain processes mentioned in Ayurveda and state their superiority over herbs. However, citing toxicity and safety concerns, the US FDA has banned such metal-containing Ayurvedic products and allowed the use of only certain herbs for treatment. So, before you try out Ayurveda for psoriasis, please talk to your doctor.
What happens if psoriasis is left untreated?
Psoriasis if left untreated, can lead to a joint condition known as psoriatic arthritis. Psoriatic arthritis can become a serious chronic joint problem that can cause significant pain and, in severe cases, disability.
Uncontrolled psoriatic patches (plaques) can become infected and cause scars. The scarred skin can diminish your self-confidence and impact your mental health over time. Psoriasis can affect your physical, emotional, and social wellbeing drastically.
Psoriasis makes you more likely to get diseases (comorbidities) such as Crohn's disease, psychological/psychiatric disorders, and eye problems (uveitis). Hence, you must seek early medical help in psoriasis.
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What You Should Know About Psoriasis and Your Diet. Available at: https://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/psoriasis/psoriasis-avoid-foods
Oliveira Mde F, Rocha Bde O, Duarte GV. Psoriasis: classical and emerging comorbidities. An Bras Dermatol. 2015;90(1):9-20. doi:10.1590/abd1806-4841.20153038
Does Ayurvedic Treatment Work for Psoriasis? Available at: https://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/psoriasis/psoriasis-ayurvedic-treatment
. Nikam D Dr., Shinde S Dr., Mishra D Dr.; From 5th World Ayurveda Congress 2012 Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India. 7-10 Dec 2012. PA01.23. Ayurvedic management of psoriasis: a comparative clinical study. Anc Sci Life. 2012;32(Suppl 1):S73.
Mikulski MA, Wichman MD, Simmons DL, Pham AN, Clottey V, Fuortes LJ. Toxic metals in ayurvedic preparations from a public health lead poisoning cluster investigation. Int J Occup Environ Health. 2017;23(3):187-192. doi:10.1080/10773525.2018.1447880
Kumar G, Gupta YK. Evidence for safety of Ayurvedic herbal, herbo-metallic and Bhasma preparations on neurobehavioral activity and oxidative stress in rats. Ayu. 2012;33(4):569-575. doi:10.4103/0974-8520.110514
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