Curing Painful Bouts of Psoriasis Why they Happen and What to Do

 By: Dr. Victor Marchione
Salts is also unique. The salt in ordinary sea water is sodium chloride, or common salt. The Dead Sea, on the other hand, contains a smaller proportion of sodium chloride, with the balance consisting of magnesium, potassium and calcium chlorides and a comparatively high concentration of bromides.

Researchers believe that the therapeutic properties of the Dead Sea are due to the presence of these other salts, mainly those of magnesium, potassium and bromide. Millions of Americans suffer from the symptoms of psoriasis. Psoriasis is a disease of the skin, but also of the immune system. Your skin regenerates itself once every 28 days. If you have psoriasis, however, your skin can regenerate as quickly as every three days. This causes inflammation that is often characterized by red, dry and thickened patches of skin. It tends to strike the elbows, knees, lower back and scalp, but it can be found just about anywhere on the body.

Researchers have found that the disease may be genetic, but environmental factors seem to trigger it as well. Stress is often a trigger for a number of people. By controlling their stress levels, these individuals can control their psoriasis. Other factors, such as a faulty immune system (producing too many T cells), acidic or citrus foods, prescription medications, sunburn, infections-strep throat is a big player when it comes to psoriasis-obesity, alcohol and even hormonal changes could all cause attacks of the skin condition. Some medical experts even think that psoriasis is caused by an impaired ability of your body to use fat; researchers have found that psoriasis is rare in countries where diets are low in fat.

Oregon Grape Root Soothes Psoriasis
If you find yourself suffering from a bout of psoriasis, try taking Oregon grape root. This plant is found abundantly in North American forests and is also known as "Mahonia." It is readily available as a supplement and offers possibilities on battling internal causes that trigger psoriasis.

In Germany, more than 440 patients with acute and chronic psoriasis were treated with an ointment made from this plant. The results: 81% had improved symptoms or were completely healed. The promising plant dropped the number of people who had severe psoriasis from 30% to less than six percent in just three months of treatment. A year later, another study found that in four weeks of treatment, Oregon grape root significantly reduced symptoms. The treatment was labeled a success.1

Take a Salty Bath
Here's another remedy that you can take at home: a salt bath. You may have noticed how popular bath salts and salt scrubs are these days. Walk down the bath isle in your local pharmacy and you are likely to see a whole host of products on the shelves. Bath salts can leave your skin feeling soft and refreshed, as well as offering relief from itching. Not only can bath salts help relive muscle strain, rheumatism and arthritic pain, they can also help with the healing of psoriasis. There is one thing that you should be aware of when using bath salts, though: you need to use the correct salt.

Salt from the Dead Sea is purported to have special healing properties. For thousands of years, people have traveled to the Dead Sea to heal all sorts of ailments. The elements within these salts make them effective healers.
The waters of the Dead Sea are unique compared to other seas and lakes, due primarily to the high concentration of salt. Dead Sea water contains as much as 27% salt compared to three percent in ordinary sea water. The composition of Dead Sea ecent studies show that bromides may be particularly effective when it comes to healing psoriasis.

In one clinical trial, "climatotherapy" at the Dead Sea was examined in the treatment of children with psoriasis. More than a 75% improvement in psoriasis symptoms was noted in 35.3% of the patients. None of the patients suffered any side effects.

If you suffer from psoriasis, consider trying a saline spa treatment. Better yet, if you can find Dead Sea salt, soak in your own bathtub at home. If it is difficult to find Dead Sea salt, Epsom salt is your next best bet. Rock salt and table salt have little healing benefit, as they contain too much sodium chloride.

Light Therapy May Be the Answer
It just might be that a little light could help cure psoriasis. The use of light in modern medicine is not a new approach. It was first used in the early eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It was around this time that scientists discovered the different frequencies of sunlight. These scientists observed light and its effects on animals and humans. Even Isaac Newton weighed in on the subject and wrote a famous book called Optiks. Newton was, in fact, the first to show that sunshine's white light, when passed through a prism, divides into the seven wavelengths of the visible color spectrum: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet.

Light therapy was also, at this time, being used to treat agitated patients and to energize those who were depressed and unresponsive. In the twentieth century, "therapeutic sunbathing" was often prescribed and came to be known as the "sun cure." Patients with tuberculosis, cholera, pneumonia, asthma, gout and jaundice were all advised to get some time in the sun.

Unfortunately, after the development of the first antibiotics, interest in light therapy dropped off. In the 1940s, though, a medical doctor and optometrist by the name of Harry Spitler began experimenting with the different frequencies of light. He found that warm colors like red, orange and yellow were invigorating, while cool colors such as green, blue and violet were relaxing.

Recently, light therapy has come to the forefront again in the treatment of "seasonal affective disorder" (SAD).

So, what does medical science have to say about the effectiveness of light therapy in treating psoriasis? In one clinical trial, researchers wanted to find out if narrow-band UV therapy affected the length of remission in patients with moderate to severe psoriasis. A group of patients who had already shown improvement in their conditions through the use of UV therapy were divided into two groups. One group was assigned a maintenance course of UV treatments for their psoriasis, while the other group was given no treatment.

The groups were followed for one year. The researchers found at the end of the study that 12 of the 22 patients (55%) in the maintenance group were still in remission. In contrast, eight of the 24 patients (33%) were still in remission. The researchers concluded that narrow-band UV therapy may achieve longer remission lengths for patients with psoriasis.

Keep Psoriasis Away with Salmon
The skin-care industry is an $8.0-billion-plus business in the U.S. That's a lot of cash. There are all kinds of creams, lotions, hydrating gels, exfoliators, anti-aging products and cleansing soaps available for purchase. The logic here is that because the skin is on the outside of the body, it should be treated separately from everything else, but your skin is merely a reflection of what is happening on the inside of your body.

Nutritional deficiencies can cause problems with your skin. When you lack certain vitamins and minerals, your skin can get dry and irritated. Certain foods can trigger reactions, causing reoccurring blemishes. Certain foods can also protect your skin and keep it looking young and healthy.

One of the best foods for promoting the health of your skin is salmon. Salmon happens to contain one very important ingredient: omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for your health, but because they cannot be made by your body, you must get them from food. Coldwater fish, like salmon, are higher in omega-3 fatty acids than other fish are.

Increasing your consumption of foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon, will help keep your skin supple and youthful. Most Americans are low in omega-3s; they tend to get far more omega-6s in the diets that they eat. Medical experts recommend a 1:1 ratio of omega-6 fatty acids to omega-3s. For the average American, the ratio is more like 20:1.

If you boost your consumption of salmon and other oily fish, you'll be increasing the amount of omega-3s that you get and you'll be helping your skin look and feel healthier. Omega-3s promote wound healing and also appear to have anti-inflammatory properties. For psoriasis, some research has shown that people who take supplements have reduced symptoms.

German researchers were able to prove in a double-blind, randomized, parallel group study that omega-3s could improve the health of damaged skin. The trial was quite extensive and was performed in eight European centers. Eighty-three patients who were hospitalized for chronic plaque-type psoriasis with a severity score of at least 15 according to the Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) participated in the 14-day trial. The patients were given either an omega-3 treatment or an omega-6 treatment. The researchers found that the omega-3 group had a significantly lower score on the PASI index after treatment than the omega-6 group. The omega-3 group also had the greatest improvement in overall scaling and redness of skin. The researchers concluded that omega-3-fatty acids are effective in the treatment of chronic plaque-type psoriasis.

A Few Other Things to Try
Try taking a bath with two teaspoons of ginger added. Lavender added to a steam bath or sauna is another way to soothe the symptoms of psoriasis. You can also gently brush your skin to remove scales and then apply goldenseal extract.

To remove toxins from your body, eat a diet that is rich in fiber. Apple pectin and psyllium husks are good sources of fiber. You may need to avoid citrus fruits, red meat or dairy for a period of time. Citrus fruits can aggravate your inflammatory response. Red meat and dairy contain "arachidonic acid" (AA), which can make the lesions of psoriasis swell and turn red.

Finally, aloe vera may bring some relief. This herb is used in many conditions that affect the skin (most notably, burns) and might also be effective in relieving psoriasis symptoms.

A Healthy Reader's Word Guide
Let's review some of the medical and health terms that are used in this month's issue:
Kidney stones: "Stones" that are made up of mineral salts or other compounds.
Sublingual immunotherapy: A method of allergy treatment that uses an allergen solution given under the tongue, which, over the course of treatment, reduces sensitivity to allergens. Sublingual immunotherapy has a very good safety profile and is given at home to adults and children.
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Psoriasis is a non-infectious and a chronic inflammatory disease of skin. The appearance of red well-defined plaques with a silvery scale is considered as a classic symptom of this disease. The extensor surface of the body and scalp are the most common areas where these plaques can be found, indicative of the occurrence of psoriasis. There are two groups of this disease, depending upon the age group affected. Most patients choose natural treatment for psoriasis like Ayurvedic medicine as these natural remedies have given the best results.
Psoriasis is one of the worst skin rashes that one can have. Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune disease that will cause the skin to thicken and redden, making flaky patches commonly known as skin scales. This is brought about by an accelerated growth of skin cells that rise up to the epidermis, the upper layer of the skin. Under common conditions, skin cells grow deep within the skin and normally rise to the surface about once a month. This rapid expansion in skin cell growth is brought about by the body's immune system emitting faulty signals that double their growth to two weeks as opposed to the healthy rate of four weeks.
When you apply the moisturizer, you should do this by gently stroking the psoriasis cream/ointment on in a way that follows the lie of the little hairs on the skin. Try not to rub too aggressively as this will only serve to aggravate the plaques - a gentle repeated motion is best.

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