Affecting approximately 125 million people – or about 2-3% of the global population – psoriasis is one of the most common autoimmune diseases in the world. It’s characterized by the chronic formation of skin lesions, red patches, papules and plaque. These formations may appear in localized areas of the body or throughout the entire body, depending on an individual’s condition.
Psoriasis is known to trigger intense bouts of itching. The sensation can be so intense that it causes the individual to scratch infection prone sores into his or her skin. Regardless of how bad it itches, you should never scratch your psoriasis, as it will only make the condition worse.
As with most autoimmune diseases and disorders, psoriasis is caused by an overactive immune system. The immune system is responsible for fending off potentially harmful viral and bacterial infections. It does this by producing key inflammatory hormones. Normally, it produces the right amount of these hormones, but there are times when it produces too much; resulting in conditions such as psoriasis.
The good news is that acupuncture may offer relief of psoriasis and its related symptoms. Jamie Starkey, LAc, is the lead acupuncturist at the Center for Integrative Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic’s Wellness Institute and says that because psoriasis is an autoimmune disease, acupuncture is a safe alternative that can help psoriasis as well as other autoimmune disorders. A study from UCLA found that acupuncture cleared psoriasis flares in half the people in the study and improved symptoms in an additional 25 percent of patients.
Acupuncture is unlikely to interfere with other psoriasis treatments and can be added to a treatment plan. A case report found acupuncture to be effective, particularly when western medicine has been exhausted. “Our experience indicates that acupuncture is induced an effective therapeutic modality for psoriasis, particularly when the western medical management is unsuccessful. We speculated about the possible involvement of the cutaneous reticuloendothelial system in the clearance of the skin lesions,” wrote the study’s researchers.
If you or someone you know is suffering with psoriasis, contact an acupuncturist for effective, alternative treatment! Click here to read more on our blog or contact us for advice.
The information provided on this site is for reference only and should not be taken as medical recommendations or professional guidance.