About Psoriasis

Red, scaly, silvery patches of skin are telltale signs of psoriasis.

With a team of board-certified dermatologists, Southwest Michigan Dermatology in Portage, Michigan, offers patients of all ages the latest treatments for all types of psoriasis. The board-certified dermatology team uses the most effective diagnostic tools to pinpoint your specific form of psoriasis and determine the best treatment plan to minimize your symptoms. Call the dermatology practice today or request an appointment online to learn more. 

Psoriasis Q & A

What is psoriasis?

Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that causes red, scaly, silvery patches of skin. While there is no cure for psoriasis, understanding your specific type and triggers allows the dermatology team at Southwest Michigan Dermatology to develop a targeted treatment plan that can help minimize your irritation and reduce the frequency of flare-ups.


Are there different types of psoriasis?

There are multiple types of psoriasis, but the most common are:


Plaque psoriasis

Plaque psoriasis causes slightly raised, red patches of skin to develop on the scalp, elbows, knees, or back. It’s the most common type of psoriasis and can appear nearly anywhere on the body.


Guttate psoriasis

Guttate psoriasis, which usually affects children and young adults, leads to teardrop-shaped scaly patches around the body.


Nail psoriasis

Nail psoriasis causes pitted nails that may appear crumbly, discolored, or loose. The affected nails may even separate from the nail bed.


Inverse psoriasis 

Inverse psoriasis primarily affects the folds of the skin, particularly the areas beneath the breasts, groin, and buttocks.


Some individuals have more than one type of psoriasis, while others experience complications such as psoriatic arthritis — a chronic condition that causes joint pain.


How do I know if I have psoriasis?

While psoriasis affects everybody differently, common signs include:

  • Dry, cracked skin
  • Red patches
  • Patches of skin with silvery scales
  • Rashes that appear brown, purple, or gray
  • Small, bleeding areas of skin

A psoriasis flare-up can happen at any time, so an effective treatment protocol is essential to protect your skin.


What causes psoriasis?

Psoriasis develops when the immune system attacks its own healthy skin cells, causing these cells to grow rapidly. While experts don’t know the exact cause of psoriasis, they do know that certain factors can trigger flare-ups, such as:

  • Dry, cold weather
  • Stress
  • Alcohol
  • Infections
  • Skin injuries
  • Certain medications

Sudden withdrawal from corticosteroid medications can also lead to psoriasis flare-ups.


What are the treatments for psoriasis?

Southwest Michigan Dermatology offers many psoriasis treatments for your individualized care plan. To reduce flare-ups, the team may recommend:

  • Corticosteroids
  • Retinoids
  • Vitamin D analogs
  • Salicylic acid
  • Light therapy
  • Fish oil supplements

Trigger avoidance is also an effective treatment to prevent flare-ups. The team works with you to help identify your triggers and minimize active rashes. 


Call Southwest Michigan Dermatology today or request an appointment online to learn more about psoriasis.