Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune situation that causes the rapid buildup of skin cells. This buildup of cells causes scaling on the skin’s surface.
Inflammation and redness around the scales is fairly common. Typical psoriatic scales are whitish-silver and develop in thick, red patches. Sometimes, these patches will crack and bleed.
Psoriasis is the result of a sped-up skin production process. Typically, skin cells grow deep in the skin and slowly rise to the surface. Eventually, they fall off. The typical life cycle of a skin cell is one month.
Scales typically develop on joints, such elbows and knees. They may develop anywhere on the body, including the:
What are the different types of psoriasis?
Plaque psoriasis is the most common type of psoriasis.
The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) estimates that about 80 percent of people with the condition have plaque psoriasis. It causes red, inflamed patches that cover areas of the skin. These patches are often covered with whitish-silver scales or plaques. These plaques are usually found on the elbows, knees, and scalp.
Guttate psoriasis is common in childhood. This type of psoriasis reason small pink spots. The most common sites for guttate psoriasis include the torso, arms, and legs. These spots are rarely thick or rose like plaque psoriasis.
Pustular psoriasis is more common in adults. It reason white, pus-filled blisters and broad areas of red, inflamed skin. Pustular psoriasis is typically localized to smaller areas of the body, such as the hands or feet, but it can be widespread.
What are the symptoms?
Psoriasis symptoms differ from person to person and depend on the type of psoriasis. Areas of psoriasis can be as small as a few flakes on the scalp or elbow, or cover the majority of the body.
The most common symptoms of plaque psoriasis include:
- itching and burning sensations around patches
- thick, pitted nails
- painful, swollen joints
- red, raised, inflamed patches of skin
- whitish-silver scales or plaques on the red patches
- dry skin that may crack and bleed
- soreness around patches