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How can Chinese Medicine assist with healing Psoriasis?

July 13, 2013

I often get asked, How can herbs and acupuncture get rid of my psoriasis?

To completely understand I need to touch on the different types of psoriasis first.

There are 7 different types of psoriasis that affect the skin and also a form of arthritis called psoriatic arthritis. The treatment protocol for each type would vary and so I will take Plaque Psoriasis as an example as it’s the most common type affecting psoriasis sufferers worldwide.

Plaque psoriasis presents with thickened lesions on the skin. It results from the over proliferation of skin cells in the epidermis. The cells shed at a faster rate as they are signalled by the immune cells in the skin to do so.

Why do the immune cells send this incorrect signal to the cells?

Well these reasons can be many and varied. Essentially the inflammation manifests in the body from a variety of sources can initiate the immune response. Lifestyle factors and dietary choices are some causes of inflammation such as:
  • Stress – signals the release of inflammatory chemicals such as cortisol, epinephrine and adrenaline
  • Specific foods such as greasy/fatty food, sugar, alcohol etc – these foods when digested produce inflammation in the body

So now we come to the question,

How can Chinese Medicine help my psoriasis?

Initially, the treatment protocol focuses on promoting the healing process in the skin to reduce the psoriatic lesions. To assist this process and make it more efficient I often advise the sufferer to limit or cease specific foods in their diet or lifestyle that is contributing to aggravating their psoriasis. Now comes the treatment, the herbal medicine prescribed assists to clear the inflammation in the skin, hydrate the skin to alleviate dryness and itchiness. These herbs tend to taste bitter as the bitter and cold nature of these herbs is what assists with clearing the inflammation in the body. Usually in combination with herbal medicine, acupuncture is administered to support the herbs in clearing any inflammation, while improving other weakness that may exists. For example calming the nervous system to initiate the parasympathetic nervous system (will cease the release of cortisol and other inflammatory chemicals), promoting a healthier digestive system and encouraging the regeneration of healthier skin.

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