Scalp psoriasis is one of the autoimmune diseases that makes the whole humanity suffer. The disease now affects not only elderly people. It tends to affect young people and cause them a lot of troubles. Moreover, the disease affects young people in their mid-thirties. The spread of plaque psoriasis is connected with the level of environmental pollution and use of dyes, hormones, and chemical preservatives in the food industry. Modern researchers study various factors’ impact on the human immune system. They deal with genetically modified plants and products of animal origin.
Psoriasis is one of the diseases the occurrence of which depends greatly on external factors that can trigger the occurrence of the disease hidden in the genes of human beings. Scalp psoriasis is one of the most common forms of psoriasis that people suffer from. This type of the disease is not a reason for hair loss. Scalp psoriasis in children is very difficult to cure.
What is Scalp Psoriasis? Scalp Psoriasis Causes
Scalp psoriasis is a non-infectious chronic disease that affects human skin. It is not contagious and doesn’t put human life at risk. Though the disease causes a lot of psychological discomfort for the patients.
There is no principal difference in the causes of psoriasis on any parts of the human skin. And, with regard to the scalp, one can say that psoriasis affects it more often than other areas of the body. Undoubtedly, it is connected with the fact that there is hair on the head, as long as in the majority of cases the lesions appear on the parts of the head covered with hair. Specialists attribute this to the fact that the accelerated growth of epithelium is restrained by hair. That leads to more intensive development of plaques and lesions on this part of the scalp.
The following reasons are believed to be the main ones that trigger the occurrence of psoriasis of the scalp:
- genetic predisposition;
- hereditary factors;
- allergic reactions;
- environmental pollution;
- smoking and alcohol;
- traumatized scalp, stitches, and adhesions;
- exposure to low temperatures (wearing no hat in winter).
According to the statistics, scalp psoriasis makes a half of all the disease cases. This disease often starts in the occipital region of the head.
Is Scalp Psoriasis Contagious?
We have already mentioned that scalp psoriasis is not contagious. One cannot become sick because of the contact with a sick person. This type of the disease is mainly a source of psychological problems and social isolation.
Scalp Psoriasis Symptoms
Unfortunately, there is no way to completely cure the disease. Though, there are quite successful ways to treat the disease and achieve a stable remission. Moreover, scalp psoriasis symptoms quite often disorient doctors. The signs of this disease are similar to many other diseases. Therefore, with the occurrence of the first signs, one should immediately consult a dermatologist to get prescribed with proper treatment for the disease.
Patients experience the following symptoms of the disease:
- mild psoriasis on scalp starts with a slight exfoliation of the skin in certain areas. As a rule, the disease first affects the skin on the back of the head;
- further exfoliation becomes worse. Minor itchy skin irritation appears;
- over time, itching increases, the patient scratches the skin to cracking and bleeding. Sometimes wounds and abrasions appear;
- the next stage of psoriasis is the appearance of large plaques and red pimples. The skin gets less elastic, it becomes rough and easily damaged;
- the epithelium on plaques and pimples exfoliates greatly. That leads to the appearance of gray scales which may eventually cover almost all the skin underneath the hair.
Unless one starts treating the disease, it will go beyond the area of hair growth and spread all over the head.
Scalp psoriasis is a very tricky disease. The thing is that at the early stages of the disease a patient believes that this is just a local irritation. The scales are mistakenly taken for dandruff. Even professionals sometimes confuse scalp psoriasis with seborrheic dermatitis. The majority of people believe that a patient has agria and avoid contact with the person.
Scalp Psoriasis Pictures
Scalp Psoriasis Treatment
Scalp psoriasis treatment implies various methods and ways. But to get rid of scalp psoriasis and reach a stable remission one should better consult a qualified specialist. Therefore, if you happen to face any of the symptoms described above, it is better to visit a doctor. Tests and doctor’s examination will help to choose the best medication.
It is very important to approach the disease in complex. Moreover, it is better to consult a doctor when treating the problem because natural treatment sometimes turns the disease into severe chronic form.
There are certain factors contributing to the early elimination of psoriasis symptoms. They are drugs, physical therapy, and diet. Here are the drugs that are usually assigned by the doctors to treat the disease:
- hormonal drugs: corticosteroids that block the activity of epidermal cells, which rapidly eliminates the inflammation of the skin;
- sedatives and general tonics taken in forms for oral administration and as infusions. These are mainly vitamins A and B, folic and nicotinic acids, and pyrogenal;
- external drugs in the form of a cream, ointments, and sprays, which is more convenient for treating the scalp. These medications may be based on coal tar, salicylic acid, and zinc oxide.
Usually, pills, injections, and infusions are prescribed for more advanced forms of the disease. As a rule, treatment combines the use of external drugs and physiotherapy. It includes:
- ultraviolet radiation;
- erbium laser irradiation.
Ultraviolet light is very beneficial for the treatment of the disease. In summer, one can sunbathe in the natural sunlight, but one has to have a very short haircut for that. In winter, or if you cannot have your hair cut short, you can use an ultraviolet comb.
Phototherapy is a short pulsed irradiation of the scalp areas affected by psoriasis with a special lamp which provides ultraviolet radiation of certain frequencies (so-called A and B ultraviolet).
Erbium laser irradiation is aimed primarily at stimulating the lymphatic and circulatory systems to enable easier interaction of scalp cells with the drugs.
Sedative and Antidepressant Drugs
The disease cannot be cured with sedative and antidepressant drugs but they are used in a complex with other drugs. Such drugs are used to:
- reduce or eliminate increased anxiety, social phobia, and depression which accompany the disease;
- improve patient’s resistance to stress;
- reduce the frequency and severity of the disease exacerbations on the background of nervous tension;
- improve sleep quality;
- reduce itching.
The following drugs are used for treatment of psoriasis:
- mood stabilizers;
Home Remedies for Scalp Psoriasis
What home remedies for scalp psoriasis may one use to feel any relief? It must be mentioned that home remedies are not very effective if used as a sole way of treatment. Moreover, consulting a specialist is always a better idea instead of searching for remedies that work through trial and error. Though, as an additional means of dealing with the problem, they may be quite effective.
The following herbal infusions may be helpful when treating scalp psoriasis with natural remedies:
- elecampane root;
- black elderberry flowers;
- lingonberry leaves;
- hair grass root;
- St. John’s wort;
Recipe 1. One should mix all the components in equal proportions. A dessert spoon of the mixture that one gets as the result is then brewed with 250 ml of water. A patient should drink half a glass.
Recipe 2. Anoint the scalp with alcohol infusion of celandine. To make it, pour half a liter of medical alcohol to a quarter cup of dry grass and leave for several hours. Such a home remedy for scalp psoriasis has a strong effect and may cause skin irritation. When one feels any discomfort, the infusion should be rinsed off with a neutral agent. Then wash your hair with chamomile infusion.
Oil Treatment of Scalp Psoriasis
Butyral compress is considered by many people to be the best way to remove the signs of scalp psoriasis. A better result can be achieved by applying the compress after washing your hair with medicinal shampoo. Make the compress with the mixture of warm olive and peanut oils. Rub the mixture gently in the scalp. Then put the shower cap on. It is better to do the procedure in the evening and wash your hair in the morning. Oil is easily removed by using a solution of apple vinegar, glyco-thymoline, or Listerine (mix a quarter of a glass and a half liter of water).
Preventive measures to avoid the aggravation of the disease:
- personal hygiene;
- quitting smoking;
- drinking no alcohol;
- avoiding stressful situations;
- keeping to the schedule of work and rest;
- taking vitamins;
- a special diet.
Proper diet is extremely important for treatment of psoriasis. One has to:
- limit the amount of fats, carbohydrates, and sugar;
- stop eating fried food;
- avoid spices, marinades, smoked products, and canned foods; avoid all the products that irritate the gastric mucosa and intestinal canal.