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Can you get psoriasis on your feet?


There aren’t many places on your body (if any at all) where psoriasis won’t appear. As one of the most common skin conditions, psoriasis can show in most places, literally from your head to your toes. The scaly skin that’s synonymous with the disease may vary from person to person in both coverage and severity. The scaly rash comes as a result of the individual’s overactive autoimmune system; the cells that are usually responsible for attacking diseased cells mistakenly attack healthy tissue instead.

Stress can be a common trigger that can create or aggravate the symptoms of psoriasis, as can a change in temperature (e.g. from season to season), different products used on the skin, and certain foods. It’s not a condition with a known cure; however, sufferers of psoriasis will find the conditions ebbs and flows and it can therefore be subject to flare-ups as well as clearer periods.

Sufferers may find it difficult to resist scratching the affected areas (plaques) as these will often itch when the skin is dry. It’s therefore important to keep the scaly patches moisturised with specialist creams. Doctors can also prescribe medication, such as emollients or steroids, to calm symptoms down, and ultraviolet light has also been known to help keep flare-ups under control. The flaky, scaly skin may benefit from a long soak in the bath—this can help flush away the dead cells, and it could also help reduce any itching.

Woman scratching itchy feet

There is a strand of psoriasis that’s linked to arthritis; it’s actually quite common for people with psoriasis to suffer from other health conditions. Psoriasis itself is not contagious but those with the disease may feel self-conscious about how it appears to others and deem their scaly skin to be unsightly. They may strive to keep affected areas covered up as a result; however, it’s much better to keep them exposed, as the UV rays in daylight hours could ease symptoms.

Psoriasis on the feet appears similar to how it would look across the rest of the body. The added risk is that our feet naturally take a lot of pressure as we move around, and the scaly, dry skin could crack and bleed. Infections could then enter the bloodstream, as well as the cracked skin causing pain if it rubs against your footwear.

There are strains of psoriasis that can cause pustules to appear on the soles of your feet and palms of your hands. More common in women than men, localised pustular psoriasis or palmoplantar pustular psoriasis (PPP) develops in 5% of psoriasis sufferers. The pustules are not a sign of infection; however, when they eventually dry up and disappear, they may leave behind a brown mark on the skin.

Psoriasis on the feet can often be confused with athlete’s foot, as the redness and rash can be similar in appearance. The difference between the two conditions, of course, is that athlete’s foot can be passed on to others. If the rash/infection is mainly between the toes, this could point to a diagnosis of athlete’s foot; however, in either case, it’s imperative that you get the opinion of a medical expert. At Treat Your Feet, we can advise you on your condition and also suggest treatment and/or products that can bring relief from the symptoms. Bear in mind that each individual may react differently to various products and treatments, and it may be a case of trial and error before you find the right solution for you.

It's a good idea to keep a diary if you’re a psoriasis sufferer, so that you may be able to pinpoint the triggers that can lead to a flare up, as well as make notes of treatments that seem to have a positive effect on your condition.

If you are experiencing any adversity around, or pain in, your feet, give us a call. You can reach the Morley practice on 0113 238 0330 or Wombwell on 01226 492412, or alternatively, you can use our contact form here


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