Psoriasis or Eczema: What is the Difference?

Skin Differences

Psoriasis and Eczema are common skin diseases. In both cases suffers experience constant itching and discomfort. These similarities often lead many people to either become confused as to which diseases they may have or they believe Psoriasis and Eczema are one and the same disease. Despite this confusion, Psoriasis and Eczema are quite separate diseases with quite different causes, symptoms, and treatments.


Psoriasis is characterized by reddish lesions accompanied by silvery scaling that flakes off, causing the skin beneath to bleed. This form of psoriasis is called plaque psoriasis and it is the most common type of Psoriasis diagnosed. The scaling is often referred to as plaque, scales or flakes.

The scaling is caused by the abnormal growth rate of skin cells. The scales are excess skin produced by imbalances in the body which cause the skins cells to grow at an excessive rate. In severe cases skin cells are believed to up to 1,000 times faster than the normal growth rate. Psoriasis typically affects the back of the elbows and front of the knees (extensor surfaces).

Psoriasis Treatment

Treatment for psoriasis demands the severity of the conditions. For mild conditions that affect only small areas of the body (typically less than 10% your skin’s surface), topical creams (i.e. skin applied), lotions, and sprays can be a safe, effective way to counter the disease.

When the disease affects much larger areas of the body (typically greater than 20% of your skin) topical products are generally neither effective nor practical to apply. Suffers of psoriasis with moderate to severe symptoms of the disease typically require ultra-violet light treatment, pills or injections to relieve the symptoms.


Eczema is a recurring, non-infectious, inflammatory skin condition. The skin becomes red, dry, and itchy. In severe cases, the skin can weep, bleed and crust over. While eczema may resemble some of the symptoms of psoriasis (i.e. dry skin and itching), eczema does not usually include the flaking of skin that is associated with psoriasis.

The precise cause of eczema is unknown. However, eczema is believed to be as a result of environmental irritants and allergens. Psoriasis, on the other hand, usually has a genetic link and is a response to factors occurring inside of the body. Eczema typically affects the inside of the arms and the back of the knees (flexor surfaces).

Eczema Treatment

The most common forms of eczema treatment are topical creams. More natural forms of controlling the symptoms of eczema include: modifying one’s diet and the use of Probiotics.

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