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How to treat beard psoriasis?

Many people believe that the beard is the last area of the face where psoriasis would develop. However, the occurrence of this skin disease in this area is not uncommon. In this article, we will explore the methods that can be used to treat beard psoriasis.

Summary
Published February 20, 2024, by Manon, Scientific Editor — 4 min read

How does psoriasis manifest itself in the beard area?

Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory disease that primarily manifests on the skin. It is characterised by an excessive renewal and accumulation of the cells of the epidermis, leading to a local inflammation . Indeed, immune cells (T lymphocytes) find themselves in the skin for unknown reasons and produce inflammatory molecules (cytokines IL-17, IL-22, TNF- α, etc.) that stimulate the proliferation of keratinocytes. The renewal period of these cells, normally four weeks, is then reduced to three days. This results in an accumulation of immature keratinocytes on the skin's surface, increasing the thickness of the outer layer. This is referred to as hyperkeratosis.

Psoriasis is easy to identify. It is characterised by the emergence of red, scaly patches on the skin. The condition is typically accompanied by varying degrees of itching and micro-lesions, which can be a source of discomfort. When the sufferer scratches, the skin gradually becomes irritated and the redness intensifies. Psoriasis usually appears on the elbows and knees. However, the entire skin surface can be affected by this disease, including the face. Therefore, it is not uncommon for the beard to be affected. The manifestation of psoriasis in the beard does not differ in any way from psoriasis on other parts of the body. The only difference is that the skin is less accessible due to the profusion of hair follicles. The itching can also be intense.

How to treat beard psoriasis?

Firstly, it is important to understand that there is no cure that can completely heal psoriasis permanently. However, it is still possible to alleviate the symptoms of the disease through various types of treatments.

  • Dermocorticoid-based treatments: Inflammation can be reduced by using a treatment containing a dermocorticoid. When applied topically, these help to soothe the skin by combating inflammation. They inhibit the NF-kB transcription factor by activating the transcription of the IkB gene, giving them anti-inflammatory effects. Dermocorticoids are available in the form of ointment, lotion, or cream.

  • The use of keratolytic active-based skincare: Psoriasis lesions often present a large number of scales or immature dead cells that cannot be naturally eliminated. The keratolytic actives help to remove these dead cells and promote the elimination of scales. Among these actives we can mention: thesalicylic acid, theglycolic acid, urea, etc.

  • Moisturising care: To reduce irritation, it is appropriate to moisturise the skin using a cream or lotion. Moisturising helps to soothe itching. It is recommended to moisturise the skin after each shave.

  • The use of essential oils: Some essential oils also help to alleviate psoriasis. The most commonly used for this purpose are the lavender essential oil, the tea tree essential oil or even the chamomile essential oil. However, it is advised to only use them under the supervision of a professional.

It is also recommended to perform an electric shave, which is less aggressive than a mechanical shave.

Sources

  • FANG J.Y. & al. Apoptotic or antiproliferative activity of natural products against keratinocytes for the treatment of psoriasis. International Journal Of Molecular Sciences (2019).

  • Psoriasis du visage. Association France Psoriasis (2022).

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