Preventing Possible Psoriasis Complications
Many people don't realize just how complex psoriasis is. Controlling psoriasis and preventing complications due to the disease requires multiple strategies. Although psoriasis is generally considered to be incurable, it can be well-controlled in most people, making complications less likely. A holistic plan is the most effective way to achieve this.
There are several possible psoriasis complications to be aware of. Firstly, skin lesions may become infected, painful, and sore. Itching may precipitate irritability, and disturb sleep, and self-esteem may be damaged if lesions are large or in prominent places.
Additionally, it is estimated that between 10 and 30% of people who have psoriasis develop psoriatic arthritis. Sometimes skin lesions appear prior to the joint changes, but other times the joint issues occur first.
The hips, pelvis, hands, and feet may be affected. Tendonitis may occur, and the heart, eyes, skin, and mucus membrane may be affected as well. Uric acid levels are generally high, creating symptoms of gout
People who suffer from psoriatic arthritis are more likely to develop spondylitis, an inflammation of one or more bones in the spine. Approximately one out of five individuals who have psoriatic arthritis develop spondylitis.
While injections of gold may provide temporary joint relief, the potent drug methotrexate is generally used to provide lasting relief and slow down the progression of the disease. Most cases of psoriatic arthritis are intermittent and mild; however severe, widespread joint damage is possible for a small percentage of individuals. This condition is known as psoriatic arthritis mutilans.
Living with Psoriatic Arthritis or Spondylitis
Medical treatments can be prescribed by your health care provider. You can improve the health of your entire body by using the following strategies:
- Think before you move. For example, use your leg muscles instead of your back while lifting.
- Move every day. Swimming, walking and yoga improve the health of your entire body without jarring or straining your joints. Be sure to find an activity that you enjoy so that you will stick with it.
- Apply warm or cool packs to sore joints. Usually cold packs are used for the first 24 hours followed by warm packs. Apply them for 15-20 minutes at a time.
- Alternate periods of activity with rest.