Understanding Psoriasis: A Common Skin Condition

What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis, also known as psoriasis vulgaris, is a chronic skin disease that causes scaly red patches on the skin. These patches can be found on different parts of the body and can be quite distressing, especially when they appear on visible areas. However, it's important to know that psoriasis is not contagious, even though some people may think it is.

How Common is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis affects a large number of people worldwide, with an estimated 125 million individuals living with the condition. The prevalence of psoriasis can vary depending on where you live, ranging from 1% to 3% of the population. In Türkiye, studies suggest that the prevalence is between 2.5% and 3%.
What are the Symptoms?
Psoriasis can take different forms, but the most common symptoms include whitish or silvery scaly patches on the skin accompanied by redness. These patches are often found on the scalp, knees, and elbows.

What Causes Psoriasis?
The exact cause of psoriasis is still unknown, but experts believe that a combination of factors can contribute to its development. These factors include changes in the immune system, genetic predisposition, and environmental factors. Environmental factors can include throat infections, certain medications, excessive alcohol consumption, smoking, skin trauma, sunburn, and stress. These factors can either trigger the onset of the disease or make existing symptoms worse.

How is Psoriasis Treated?
Treatment for psoriasis can vary depending on the individual's condition and the severity of the disease. It's important to regularly communicate with medical professionals throughout the treatment process. Some patients may skip follow-up appointments, which can lead to unsupervised use of medications and serious skin issues. The drugs used in psoriasis treatment can cause thinning of the skin and non-healing wounds. Self-medication without proper medical guidance can also result in serious health problems, such as liver damage. Therefore, it's crucial to follow the doctor's recommendations during the treatment process.