Psoriasis is a chronic skin ailment that affects a large number of people. Although there is no known cure for it, it is treatable. Psoriasis is characterized by an abnormal accumulation of skin cells on the affected individual’s body due to fast cell synthesis. The overproduction of skin cells causes thick, scaly patches to appear on various parts of your body. In extremely unusual cases, this may even affect the sensitive skin surrounding your eyes.
The illness can manifest itself in various ways, depending on the amount of melanin in your skin (the pigment that gives skin its color).
Psoriasis on eyelids can be treated, but your doctor will need to pay extra attention to this area of your body. The tissues in this delicate area are fragile. They are prone to irritability and scarring when injured. Your dermatologist will need to closely monitor your treatment to reduce the risk of exacerbating the skin disease and making it more severe.
Symptoms of psoriasis around the eyes
Psoriasis around the eyes can share similar symptoms with psoriasis that affects other body parts. But psoriasis on and around your eyes may disrupt your daily life more because of its position. For example, skin cells buildup may develop into huge patches that you have problems closing and opening your eyelids.
- Skin scaling, crusting, and discoloration around the eyelids
- Irritation, including itching and pain
- The eyelids turn either upwards or downwards
- Pain when moving the eye
- Eyelashes that rub on the eye
- Eye dryness as a result of scales pulling the eyelid outward
Causes of eyelid psoriasis
The exact cause of psoriasis is still unknown. However, some factors are believed to trigger this skin condition. These triggers include:
- Certain medications
- Skin damage as a result of a bite, injury, or other trauma
How to maintain healthy eyes when you have psoriasis
Psoriasis is linked to several eye problems, most of which cannot be cured without medical treatment. However, there are things you can do to reduce the likelihood that you will have these issues. Here are effective tips to help you maintain healthy eyes if you suffer from psoriasis.
- Work with a doctor to come up with a treatment plan.
A doctor, particularly an ophthalmologist, will assess your symptoms and come up with medications that suit your case. The doctor may recommend an ointment that contains corticosteroids or another component. When treating psoriasis around the eyes, a doctor might suggest using steroid ointments that have been specially manufactured for the purpose.
Because the skin on the eyelids is easily damaged and long-term use of the ointment might lead to difficulties, it is imperative that the process of applying it be carefully supervised by a medical professional. A person may need to visit an ophthalmologist frequently to be evaluated for glaucoma or cataracts.
Psoriasis treatment may also involve tacrolimus or Protopic ointments, which medical professionals prescribe. These drugs are typically prescribed for treating atopic dermatitis, more commonly known as eczema; however, they may also help reduce inflammation and dryness associated with psoriasis.
A systemic oral or injectable medication such as oral retinoids or methotrexate may be prescribed by a doctor depending on the severity of psoriasis that has affected the eyelids and how well the affected area has responded to earlier treatments.
These kinds of pharmaceuticals frequently come with a host of unwanted side effects. In most cases, physicians would only recommend them for temporary usage to help patients cope with a flare, which is a period during which symptoms become more severe.
- Manage your stress
Stress is a fairly important inducer of psoriasis flares, whether psychological or physical stress. Either type of stress can cause psoriasis flares. Flares can arise when people are under a lot of stress and not getting enough sleep. So try to reduce or manage your stress by practicing meditation, yoga, etc.
- Avoid smoking
Psoriasis is more likely to appear in smokers since smoking raises the likelihood of developing the condition. In addition, smoking increases the likelihood that the intensity of your psoriasis will be severe.
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO), smoking can also cause harm to the eyes and raises the risk of developing eye issues. On the other hand, quitting smoking can lower one’s risk of developing certain eye diseases.
- Eat a healthy diet
Even if there isn’t a conclusive study that proves a particular diet helps control psoriasis flare-ups, eating a diet that is both well-balanced and healthy is beneficial for general health, including eye health. This is true even though eating this way is good for overall health. You could also try eliminating dairy products or refined sugar from your diet. It may make a difference, but there’s no single solution that’ll be beneficial to everyone.