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Itchiness is the most bothersome of all Psoriasis symptoms. It is characteristic of almost all types of Psoriasis, but the severity of the itch between flares may vary. The itching sensation is caused due to the inflammation brought about by the abnormal immune responses[1].

Triggers that worsen the itch

Certain triggers like increased stress levels and weather changes can exacerbate itchiness[2]. When you are stressed, you are more likely to experience a Psoriasis flare-up, which can trigger bouts of itchiness. Similarly, alcohol, very dry weather or warm climates can also lead to itchy skin[2].

Although it sounds strange, scratching the itchy skin acts as a trigger too. Scratching initiates the ‘itch-scratch’ cycle[2]. This means that scratching irritates the skin, causing bleeding and wounds. The body tries to begin the healing process by triggering more inflammation, which, in turn makes the itch worse[1].

Here are six tips for fast relief:

  1. Keep your skin moist: Moisturising is one of the main skin care tips for Psoriasis. It prevents drying of the skin and allows the healing process to set in. Applying a thick coat of Psoriasis cream can help.[3]
  2. Use the right skin care products: Products containing salicylic acid are good for softening the scales and reducing flaking, which in turn can help reduce the itch. Products that contain menthol or camphor can also help reduce the itch. Ask your Dermatologist for a product best suited to your needs.[3][4]
  3. Use a cold compress: These can reduce the itch signals that the nerve endings send to your brain.[4]
  4. Skip hot baths: Heat can increase the itchiness.[4]
  5. Limit your bath time: More than 15 minutes under the shower will tend to dry out your skin and increase itchiness.[4] 
  6. Comply to your Psoriasis treatment: Treating Psoriasis right is the best way to get rid of the itch. Adherence to therapy prescribed by your Dermatologist will go a long way in relieving the bothersome itchiness.[4]

Itching can be annoying. It can reduce your ability to concentrate, cause sleep interruptions and impact your relationships.[2] Identify your itch triggers and make lifestyle changes to reduce their impact on your condition. It is important that you contact your Dermatologist if itchiness still bothers you and has impacted your quality of life.

Curated Tags

Talk to your Dermatologist
about biologics for clear* skin

*No plaque elevation, erythema or
scaling, hyperpigmentation maybe present.

References

  1. Medical news today. Why psoriasis itches and how to stop it. Available [Online] at:
    https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319585#why-does-psoriasis-itch Accessed on 15 Oct 2020.

  2. Healthline. Why Does Psoriasis Itch? Available [Online] at:
    https://www.healthline.com/health/psoriasis-why-does-it-itch#remedies Accessed on 15 Oct 2020.

  3. Everyday health. 8 Ways to Relieve Your Psoriasis Itch. Available [Online] at:
    https://www.everydayhealth.com/psoriasis/living-with/relieve-psoriasis-itch/ Accessed on 15 Oct 2020.

  4. American Academy of  Dermatology Association. 8 ways to relieve itchy psoriasis. Available [Online] at: https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/psoriasis/skin-care/itch-relief Accessed on 15 Oct 2020.