Psoriasis Specialist

Medical & Aesthetic Dermatology

Board Certified Dermatologist located in Columbia, MD

For most people who get psoriasis, it becomes a lifelong disease, so how well you manage its symptoms can make a big difference in the quality of your life. Cheryl Bansal, MD, a board-certified dermatologist, and the team at Medical & Aesthetic Dermatology in Columbia, Maryland provide effective psoriasis treatments that relieve painful, itchy symptoms. Dr. Bansal offers narrowband ultraviolet B light therapy, a safe, drug-free treatment for patients of all ages in Howard County. Learn about effective treatments to keep your

Psoriasis Q & A

Medical & Aesthetic Dermatology

What is psoriasis?

Psoriasis is a skin condition in which your skin cells multiply too quickly. As a result, an excess of cells builds on the surface of your skin, forming scaly, red, itchy, or painful patches. There is no cure for psoriasis, so the focus of treatment is to manage symptoms by preventing your skin cells from rapidly reproducing.

What are the symptoms of psoriasis?

There are several different types of psoriasis, each with their own set of symptoms. Plaque psoriasis is the most common form of the condition. It often appears on your elbows as raised patches of skin with silver or white scales. Other types of psoriasis and their symptoms include:

  • Guttate: Often triggered by a bacterial infection, it appears as water-droplet shaped scaling on your torso, arms, legs, and scalp with a fine scaly coating
  • Inverse: Affects the skin around your groin, armpits, breasts, or genitals and appears as red, smooth patches that get worse due to  friction or sweating
  • Pustular: An uncommon form that develops as pus-filled blisters on your hands or feet and can also cause fever, chills, diarrhea, and severe itching
  • Nail: Affects fingernails and toenails, causing pitting, abnormal growth, and discoloration

Along with a skin rash and scales, you could also experience itching or burning in the affected areas of your psoriasis. Swollen and stiff joints are not uncommon. The patches of affected skin can cover a small area of your body or a larger, harder-to-manage site.

How do you treat psoriasis?

Gaining control over psoriasis symptoms can mean learning how to identify and avoid its triggers to reduce outbreaks. It helps to live a healthy lifestyle and use an effective psoriasis skin-care regimen.

A board-certified dermatologist like Dr. Bansal can create an individualized treatment plan that helps keep your psoriasis at bay. Dr. Bansal can also watch for early signs of other diseases, including psoriatic arthritis or diabetes, conditions you are at higher risk of developing when you already have psoriasis. Your treatment plan could include:

  • Topical corticosteroids
  • Topical retinoids
  • Salicylic acid solutions
  • Moisturizers
  • Vitamin D analogues
  • Calcineurin inhibitors
  • Coal tar
  • Narrowband light therapy (phototherapy)

Narrowband light therapy uses ultraviolet B (UVB) light to treat patches of psoriasis without the risk of drug interactions. It’s natural, safe, and a good option for children who have psoriasis. UVB therapy can treat your entire body at one time, and provides an alternative to dependency on medications for patients of all ages in Howard County.

To learn more about ways to manage psoriasis and effective treatments, call the Columbia office or schedule an appointment using online booking.

Conditions & Treatments