Approximately 1.8 million people in the UK suffer with psoriasis, a chronic autoimmune skin disease. Psoriasis commonly presents in the mid 30s – but it can occur at any age.
What causes psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a common skin condition that causes red patches of inflamed skin with silvery-white scales, often on the elbows and knees but may occur anywhere on the body. It is often genetic and is not contagious.
Skin turnover is accelerated in those suffering from psoriasis, which causes accumulation of cells on the skin surface and leads to scaling. Psoriasis triggers include: stress, cold, dry weather and lack of adequate sun exposure, recent infection such as strep throat and upper respiratory infections, dry skin and injury to the skin such as cuts, burns, and insect bites. Certain medications can induce a psoriasis flare including anti-malarials, beta-blockers, and lithium. Smoking and excessive alcohol consumption may also exacerbate the condition.