Plaque psoriasis starts under the skin

While no one knows the exact cause of plaque psoriasis, scientists do know that it starts in your immune system.

In psoriasis, your skin cells grow more rapidly than normal, rising to the surface of your skin in days, rather than weeks, causing the plaques, redness, and flakes you see on your skin.

What can cause it?

  • It starts with the immune system

  • Genes

  • Environmental triggers

Research has shown that psoriasis is an autoimmune disease (when the body’s own immune system attacks your healthy tissues by mistake).

This means your immune system, which usually protects your body from getting sick, has become too active, causing symptoms like plaques, redness, and those flakes that feel like they go wherever you do.

Genes may also make it more likely for some people to develop plaque psoriasis than others—meaning psoriasis can run in families.

Scientists are exploring how genes pass down psoriasis from one generation to the next.

Some symptoms can be triggered by things we experience in everyday life. Common triggers of psoriasis include:

  • Stress
  • Injury to the skin (cuts, scratches, or sunburns)
  • Infections
  • Certain medicines for depression, lupus, irregular heartbeats, and pain (NSAIDs)
  • Changes in weather that dry out the skin

Is it more than just skin deep?

In a recent survey, people living with moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis shared their thoughts about the debilitating symptoms, uncomfortable encounters, and intimacy struggles they've experienced.

Learn More

How to talk with your dermatologist

Everyone experiences plaque psoriasis differently. So, what happens in one person with psoriasis may not happen in another.

Learn about plaque psoriasis and how you can talk with your dermatologist.

Get the conversation started

Learn more about psoriasis from these helpful organizations

There’s so much to know about psoriasis. That’s why there is support from organizations that can help you find the answers to your questions and connect you with others who share your journey.

Learn about treatments, how to manage your psoriasis, and share your experience with others at these psoriasis website links.

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FREE eBOOK: Ready, Set, PsO!

Discover helpful tips for living more comfortably with moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis.

Ready, Set, PsO! is a collection of useful life hacks from people just like you who have found interesting ways to master their psoriasis symptoms.

You will learn:

  • How to manage symptoms at work
  • Which foods to eat to avoid flares
  • How to talk to friends, family, or a date
  • And much, much more


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