Often the skin conditions of psoriasis and eczema are categorized together as practically the same skin condition. And although it is true that these two chronic skin conditions share a lot of similarites both in their root causes for the conditions as well as in the characteristics of each condition, still there are a few distinct differences. This article will explore the similarites and differences of these two contditions as well as provide some insight on how to treat and heal these conditions.
Symptoms and causes of psoriasis
There is no exact cause of psoriasis. It is often a hereditary condition that affects roughly seven to eight million Americans. The condition is linked to the rapid cell growth of the outer skin layer. The normal cell growth of skin cells is twenty-eight days, which is how long it takes the skin to move from the bottom layer of skin to the top epidermis or outer layer of the skin. Instead the growth on the epidermis never fully matures, but continues to reproduce. The result is an excessive amount of skin cells in a rather short period of time. The skin appears in patches on the legs, knees, arms, elbows, scalp, ears, and body. The skin is often covered in silvery white scales that can also appear red and brown in colour. Psoriasis can also affect the fingernails making them appear lackluster with deep ridges or pits.
This skin irritation can come in periodic flare-ups with periods of remission. Ther first symptoms often appear between the ages of fifeteen and twenty-five years and the attacks can be triggered by a number of issues including: stress, illness, injury, nervous tension, bacterial infections, sun burns, over use of drug or alcohol, non-steroid inflammatory drugs, and certain blood pressure medications. There can also be symptoms similar to a “psoriasis arthritis”. Evidence shows that the flare ups can also have a dietary or digestive cause behind them. Quite possibly a faulty utilization of fat causes psoriasis as there seems to be few psoriasis cases in countries that maintain a low fat diet. It has been seen that a build up of toxins in the colon has also been linked to psoriasis. The flare ups also seem to get worse in the winter.
Symptoms and causes of eczema
Eczema is actually considered a type of dermatitis, or an inflammation of the skin. It is often refered to as atopic dermatitis. What occurs here is that the inflammation that causes the dermatitis causes the skin to become scaly, flaky, thick, weepy, crusty and the colour of the skin often changes and the skin often becomes itchy. These symptoms often appear on the: face, elbows and behind the knees. There are several underlying problems causing eczema and they seem to be greatly linked to digestive problems or allergies. They are: Hypochloridia: this conditition is caused by hydrochloric acid in the stomach. It is also referred to as “leaky gut syndrom” . This is caused by the intestines becoming pourous so that the food enters the blood stream which provokes allergic reactions. The second cause of eczema is Candidiasis: which is an overgrowth of yeast in the system. Sometimes it’s caused by simple contact dermatitis which happens through contact with: perfumes, cosmetics, rubber, latex, plants, metals, alloys and poison ivy. Often eczema is common among those who are prone to allergies. If there is a family history of: asthma, hay fever, or contact dermatitis than chances are greater that the individual will have some sort of eczema. The individual will likely have their first reaction between the ages on one and five. It can also be triggered by: cold or warm temperatures, stress or allergies and infections like colds.
Treatment for Psoriasis and Eczema:
It is recommended that one takes Red clover, burdock root and dandelion as a tea or supplement to help cleanse the skin and bloodstream. Wild Pansy works well when applied topically to these skin conditions. Also add some fatty acids to the diet such as primrose oil, black current oil, fish oils and flaxseed oil. Other supplements to add include: zinc which helps heal skin and kelp which is full of vitamins, minerals and nutrients for the skin. Also consider adding a general multi-vitamin to improve the quality of the skin.
For psoriasis skin try gently brushing the skin with a loofah to remove scales and applying alcohol free goldenseal extract to the skin. Essential oils of lavender, chamomile, geranium, and violet will help to heal the skin. For diet recommendations ensure that you are getting enough fiber to keep your colon clean. Eat at least 50% raw foods such as fruits, vegetables, and fish in the diet. Avoid fried foods, processed foods and saturated fats as well as wheat and dairy.
For treatment specifically for eczema try using chamomile internally and topically to body. Add brown rice and millet to the diet. Similar to those with psoriasis you need to keep the colon clean and that means adding fiber from either psyllium husks or flaxseeds. Avoid eating: eggs, peanuts, soy foods, wheat and dairy, sugar, strawberries, chocolate, fats, fried and processed foods. Consider also getting a humidifier to help the skin.
Also look into some techniques for relaxing and dealing with stress as this can trigger the skin care reactions. Try a relaxing yoga class, listening to music or meditation. Through relaxation, diet regulation and the right choices of skin care products you should be able to reduce flare ups for eczema and psoriasis.