August is Psoriasis Awareness Month
It’s estimated that 7.5 million Americans suffer from psoriasis, an autoimmune disease that results in red, scaly patches forming on the skin and can also cause joint stiffness and pain. At Paul S. DeMarco, DPM, we’d like to share some facts about this disease with our patients in order to help spread awareness and help those affected get the treatment they need:
· Psoriasis can strike any part of your body, including your feet. If it occurs on the soles of your feet, walking can become uncomfortable and painful.
· Symptoms of psoriasis on the skin of your feet are often mistaken for athlete’s foot. Psoriasis can also affect your toenails causing pitting, discoloration and the separation of the nail from the nail bed. These are similar symptoms to a fungal infection. If you notice any unusual changes or are experiencing discomfort due to a skin or nail condition on your feet it’s best to make an appointment at our Somers Point office sooner rather than later and let our podiatrist, Dr. Paul S. DeMarco, diagnose your condition and prescribe the correction treatment.
· Psoriasis is not contagious. People who get the disease usually have a genetic predisposition for psoriasis.
· There are many things that can trigger a psoriasis flare up: stress, certain medications, injury or trauma to the skin, infection. Not all of these are triggers for everyone. Although researchers have not been able to scientifically confirm them, patients report that weather, allergies and certain foods can also trigger attacks.
· Psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis can be associated with other conditions including: diabetes, cardiovascular disease and depression.
· Psoriasis can develop at any age (even in children) but it most often occurs in those between the ages of 15 and 35. Psoriasis affects men and women at equal rates.
It’s a good rule of thumb that if you notice anything different about the appearance of your feet or you are in pain or have other symptoms you should contact us by calling: (609) 927-4894. For more information specifically about psoriasis, ask the podiatrist and visit www.posriasis.org.