In short, psoriasis is a skin condition where patches of skin cells advance through their life cycle too quickly. Where normal skin ages at the same rate as the other cells around them, cells effected by psoriasis age more quickly and rise to the skin’s surface as – usually — white, dry patches.

Psoriasis is believed to be an autoimmune disorder; current medical treatments usually include harsh medicines. In fact, the US National Library of Medicine lists one of the complications of psoriasis as “side effects from medicines used to treat psoriasis”.

Commonly, doctors prescribe lotions with cortisone, coal tar, or anthralin. The newest treatment is a collection of drugs that work to reduce the body’s immune response.

Cortisone is a steroid hormone, which works by suppressing the immune system. Occurring naturally in the body as well, cortisone is used to elevate blood pressure in preparation for the fight or flight response. Topical cortisone use can lead to thin skin, red lesions and acne.

The FDA says that coal tar is safe in concentrations between 0.5% and 5% and that no scientific evidence suggests that the concentrations seen in non-prescription treatment are carcinogenic. However, the International Agency for Research on Cancer says that preparations of more than 5% crude coal tar are a Group 1 Carcinogen. As well, the NPF states that coal tar includes about 10,000 chemicals, of which roughly half have been identified.

Anthralin has offered good results to psoriasis patients, according to the Psoriasis Guide, however, its use has been declining due to its tendency to stain the skin and cause irritation.

Non-Toxic Treatments
Try some of these options:

  • Vary your diet to check for food sensitivities
  • Keep your skin moist with all-natural moisturizing creams
  • Get out into the sun – many people find that psoriasis goes away while on vacation in sunny climes
  • Reduce stress
  • Use Mayan Magic Healing Balm – tepezcohuite has worked wonders for many of our clients and the dense cream stays in place, moisturizing throughout your day. With all natural ingredients, you can use it without side effects on every member of your family!

References
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001470
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cortisone
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/steroids/HQ01431
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coal_tar
http://www.psoriasisguide.ca/medical_treatment/topical/dithranol.html