Psoriasis is a medical condition in which there is a buildup of rough, dry, and dead skin cells that creates reddish-pink skin areas. It can occur anywhere on the body, even on the face. If you have psoriasis on your face, you will want to treat it carefully, as the face has very sensitive areas of skin. In most cases, it is most effective to use a variety of treatment types to minimize psoriasis, including traditional medicine and natural medicine. These treatments include topical medications, light therapy, and supplements to your diet.
EditUsing Traditional Medicine
- Apply corticosteroids. Once you have been diagnosed, your doctor will present a treatment plan. This plan is likely to include a topical corticosteroid, which you will need to apply directly to the areas of psoriasis.
- Low-potency corticosteroids reduce redness and swelling.
- Some side effects of corticosteroid use can include: rash, bruising, skin tearing, and enlarged blood vessels. Discontinue use and contact your doctor if you experience these problems.
- Use synthetic vitamin D. This vitamin slows the growth of skin cells and is usually applied in topical form. However, this treatment can irritate the skin, so it should be used sparingly and with caution.
- In many cases, vitamin D will be combined in a cream with corticosteroids.
- Use methotrexate pills. In addition to topical medication, your doctor may prescribe an oral medication, especially if your psoriasis is severe. For instance, your doctor may prescribe methotrexate. This is an anti-inflammatory medication that is taken either in pill form or in an injection, although most patients take it weekly in tablet form.
- Discuss the medications your doctor wants to use, including possible side effects, and be sure that your doctor is an experienced dermatologist before agreeing to this type of treatment.
- Be sure that you are only using these medications for short periods of time. Otherwise, the side effects can be severe.
- Take ciclosporin. This is a drug that suppresses the immune system and stops the inflammation associated with psoriasis. It is usually taken daily in pill form. In order to get the benefits from this medication, it may need to be taken for several months, up to several years.
- Your blood pressure and kidney function should be monitored while you are on this medication.
- Apply retinoid creams. Retinoids are derived from vitamin A and are used for a variety of skin conditions. They are applied directly to the skin in order to remove scales and ease inflammation. One common type of retinoid that is used for facial psoriasis is acitretin.
- This medication should not be taken if you are pregnant or breast feeding.
- Take a biologic agent. These medications are made from natural materials, such as plants or microorganisms, and are sometimes known as biological response modifiers or targeted therapies. They interact with specific parts of the immune system, stopping it from attacking the skin and causing inflammation. Some common biologic agents that are prescribed for facial psoriasis include:
- Infliximab (Remicade)
- Etanercept (Enbrel)
- Adalimumab (Humira)
- Ustekinumab (Stelara)
- Secukinumb (Cosentxy)
- Use light therapy. In addition to medication, your doctor may suggest that you undergo photo therapy, or ultraviolet light therapy, to treat your psoriasis. Psoriasis often responds well to brief daily exposure to light. Your doctor will instruct you about the light therapy that is needed, as exposure to too much light can make your psoriasis worse.
- Do not use light therapy if you have photo-sensitivity or sun damage on your face.
EditUsing Natural Medicine
- Use moisturizer. It can help facial psoriasis quite a bit to keep the affected areas moisturized. Keeping the affected areas moisturized will make your skin feel better and keep scaling under control.
- Using the right type of moisturizer is important. Use a medicated moisturizers made to treat psoriasis or over-the-counter moisturizers that do not have chemicals, fragrances, and dyes that could irritate your skin.
- If you wish to wash your face, use a gentle non-soap cleanser. This will help to avoid further irritation.
- Apply aloe vera. Aloe vera is a plant that is known to reduce redness, scaling, itching, and inflammation. It can be used several times a day on psoriasis and can be used indefinitely without side effects.
- You can even grow an aloe vera plant yourself and use the gel that is located on the inside of the leaves directly on your skin.
- Take fish oil supplements. Fish oil contains Omega-3 fatty acids, which are great for the skin. They may reduce the inflammation that is associated with psoriasis, however results from studies are mixed.
- Take 3 grams or less of fish oil daily. This is generally recognized as safe and beneficial.
- Apply Oregon grape cream. Oregon grape is also known as barberry and Mahonia aquifolium. In topical applications, Oregon grape has been proven to reduce inflammation and ease the symptoms of psoriasis.
- A 10% Oregon grape extract cream has been used successfully in research for psoriasis treatments.