Psoriasis sufferers commonly are left out in the cold when it comes to finding a cure for their itchy, scaly symptoms. While some can find ways to alleviate some of the more brutal symptoms, most are left with at least a good portion of symptoms remaining.
So what gives? Is there no hope for psoriasis sufferers? According to many sufferers, there are natural treatments that do work (sometimes). I am going to go through a list of natural treatments that have reportedly worked on others.
What is Psoriasis?
Well, if you have it, you likely already know, so I will keep this portion brief. Psoriasis is considered an autoimmune disease. While it has many forms, the most popular form is called Plaque Psoriasis. This results in red raised plaques on the skin. These patches are typically found on the elbows, scalp, knees and lower back. Most sufferers will tell you it can be found pretty much anywhere. Essentially, the skin produces new skin cells at an increased rate. For many, this results in flaking. It also results in awful itching. It is not contagious.
Can it be cured?
Officially, no. BUT, there are lots of sufferers who claim a range of things improve the condition. Before we get into natural remedies, I am going to tell you something I do that seems to work well for me (when I actually do it). And you are going to hate it.
Cold showers. Cold showers will even save you money (I’m not going to dive into all that right now, but just trust me, your bills will lower). I’ve found that my psoriasis flares up from hot showers. Cold showers definitely work favorably for me when it comes to relieving symptoms of psoriasis. But cold showers kind of suck, also. Whenever I slip up and get back to taking hot showers, I see my psoriasis get more active. I usually start out in room temperature water and then lower it as I go. To be honest, I feel cleaner. I don’t waste time in long showers. And my psoriasis is ultimately better.
Aside from that, here’s a few other items that people report working…
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is known to relieve the itching of plaques, for starters. The itching is a primary reason the spots get worse and worse. As any of you know, once you go down the road of itching it, you almost can’t stop and of course, it gets a lot worse. Some people will use a one-to-one ratio of ACV / Water to treat the plaques. Here’s the thing, if you have open cuts, the ACV may burn like heck! You might want to try this option in low dose and see if it improves the psoriasis spots. You definitely do not want to make them worse. That said, you can never go wrong keeping apple cider vinegar around the house. It has so many amazing uses. Here’s the Apple Cider Vinegar I use.
Dead Sea Salts
Lots of people swear by taking dead sea salt baths. I’ve done it. You definitely want to make sure you moisturized after you get out. It is recommended to sit in the dead sea salt bath for 15 minutes. I felt like I noticed improvements. The downside is that it can get expensive if you do it daily. I typically buy mine at Whole Foods because they have a ton of options, but I’ve also used these from Amazon.
Some people even wrap their affected areas in cellophane using a DIY recipe with Dead Sea Salt.
Dissolve 2 to 3 tbsp. (113 to 170 g) of Dead Sea salts in 4 cups (1 l) of warm water. The water should be no more than 2 degrees over your body temperature. Use a thermometer to check the temperature before beginning your wrap. Use 1 cup (907 g) of Dead Sea salt and 1/2 gallon (1.9 l) of water if you plan to wrap your whole body or if you are treating psoriasis. Allow the ingredients to sit for approximately 10 minutes. (you can see the wrap here)
Researchers from the University Medical Center Freiburg found that creams which contain capsaicin reduce the inflammation and pain of the psoriasis plaques. Some people report feeling a sting when they apply it. I’ve never done this, but I do know what its like to have an itchy plaque fired up and to be honest, a slight sting from an ointment actually sounds appealing. Here’s an ointment that has it in it. Again, I’ve never tried it.
Many people claim that oat paste improves their psoriasis. Others take baths with it.
Turmeric is one of my favorite spices. It has so many uses listing them all would take way too long. The active ingredient, Curcumin, is even said to be able to alter gene expressions. Turmeric has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant capabilities. A 2012 review by the International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular biology show turmeric’s ability to alter TNF cytokine expression. And due to this science, it might lend some credibility to turmeric as a savior for psoriasis. Turmeric can be taken by mixing with water (my preferred method) or you can buy capsules. You can also add it to food. It has powerful health benefits well beyond just the potential to relieve psoriasis symptoms. Here are capsules. Lot’s of people use the capsules. I just buy the organic powder at the grocery store and put it in water.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is said to have antiseptic qualities. Many sufferers apply it to the skin for that very reason. Some people use it in shampoos when they have plaques on their scalp. There are no supporting studies, results and improvements are completely anecdotal. Here is some on Amazon, I’d just check reviews and find what’s best.
This lady’s video is pretty popular, comments are a mixed bag in terms of whether or not her methods work.