What is psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a skin disorder that causes skin cells to multiply up to 10 times the normal rate. This results in bumpy red patches on the skin, covered white scales. They can appear anywhere but mostly on the scalp, elbows, knees and lower back. Experts agree that psoriasis is an autoimmune disease.
The good news is that psoriasis cannot be passed on from person to person.
About genital psoriasis
Genital psoriasis can be embarrassing, uncomfortable and difficult to treat. Some common ways to deal with psoriasis in general, including genital psoriasis, is to use a gentle moisturiser after you bathe or shower. Studies have, however, shown that harsher treatments can damage the sensitive skin around the genital area.
While other forms of the condition are very red and scaly, genital psoriasis manifests as smooth, red, shiny patches. The scales are mostly absent because they rub off against your clothes when you move. Women may have some shiny red patches in the skin close to the vagina, while men may have small red patches on the shaft or tip of the penis.
Genital psoriasis does not only affect the private parts. It can manifest anywhere from the belly button down. Here are other places where genital psoriasis can occur:
- Upper thighs. There may be small round patches on your inner thighs. This area gets irritated by tight clothing, sweat, exercise and sex.
- Creases between your thigh and groin. The skin in these folds is very thin, and can easily crack open and bleed.
- The anus. You might have itching, bleeding and pain when you go to the bathroom.
- Pubic area. The pubic area is directly above the genitals and is usually covered with hair. The doctor might treat psoriasis in the hair, similar to the way the scalp would be treated.
Psoriasis is a distressing condition. It can be embarrassing and if in the genital area, can affect your self-confidence to form new intimate relationships.
Treatment for genital psoriasis
Treatment options are available although this form of psoriasis is not easy to treat. If you have general psoriasis as well as genital psoriasis you may need to have 2 treatment protocols. Medical practitioners agree that a specialist dermatologist is consulted to work out a plan that is best for you.
Here are some of the treatments for genital psoriasis which may help.
- Topical ointments which are applied directly to the skin such as a weak to moderate potency cortisone steroid cream. This can be used as needed to moisturise, relieve pain and itch, reduce inflammation, and slow down the rate of skin cell growth.
- The skin around the genitals is thinner than the body skin and responds quickly to topical ointments.
- Emollients are effective creams that moisturise skin that is dry, itchy, and scaly. They also act as a protective barrier cream for the skin by locking in moisture.
UV rays and laser treatment must not be used in the genital area. Genital Infections must be treated promptly to avoid the disastrous spread of infection to other areas.
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