Our skin, like the rest of our organs, is a marvelous thing. Its many layers are host to countless cells all carrying out different functions that work together to help support the whole. Some produce materials to be ferried and used for repairs while others keep everything insulated from damage by absorbing it instead. The complexity of our body necessarily means there are many things in constant motion. As with anything like that, that means there is always a chance for something to end up gumming up the proverbial gears. Skin disorders tend to be the most common manifestations of these problems. Each disorder represents a particular mistake or misadventure for the skin. Unfortunately, some are easier to correct than others and that doesn’t always correspond with how frequently the disorder occurs. That’s why we’re going to take a quick look at some common skin disorders. It will help us all recognize them and give a broader idea of how things can go wrong for our skin.
This term actually covers a number of disorders, but typically gets applied to the most familiar kind: plaque psoriasis. The disorder is characterized by an irritated patch of reddish skin that dries out and scales up creating obvious patches on the skin. Its telltale combination of red patches with light scales tends to be highly embarrassing to anyone experience it and often requires treatment to properly heal. Other kinds of psoriasis can result in the formation of pustules or more widespread dots of irritated, scaly skin. There are no clear causes for any kind of psoriasis, but it is broadly considered an autoimmune disease and frequently believed to be genetic in origin. It is possible to contain, treat, and minimize the symptoms with appropriate treatments such as creams, light therapy, and sometimes medication. There is no way to actually cure psoriasis due to it likely being a genetic disease, but the potential for avoiding the worst of the symptoms generally means the disorder will have little impact on someone’s life once they’ve received proper treatment.
Much as with psoriasis, eczema is a more of a term for a broad family of conditions despite being frequently used by non-professionals for a single disorder. It covers a number of skin disorders that all result in irritated skin, itchy areas, and tender skin. As a rule, eczema is in many cases a relatively harmless if frustrating issue unless it is caused by an allergen. The severity of the allergic response will then determine how dangerous the eczema is to the person suffering from it. Fortunately, the most common form of eczema is simply caused by contact with a harsh substance or one that provokes a simple allergic response such as poison oak or a similar plant. These are easily treated with creams and ointments meant to soothe the skin and specialized treatments. Other forms of eczema can happen due to genetics or particular diseases. Seeing your dermatologist is generally the best way to isolate what kind you’re experiencing and get appropriate treatment.
As the bane of teenagers everywhere, acne is one of the most common kinds of skin disease. It is also a nuisance to anyone experiencing significant enough hormonal fluctuations as well. The root cause of most acne is invasive bacteria trying to colonize your skin and your own bacteria fighting back. Studies have shown there are a handful of particular “hostile” strains found in acne along with a strain that is commonly found on human skin trying to eat the others. This conflict happens when the environment of your skin becomes an ideal environment for more than just your own microbiome. Most of the time an excess of oil secreted by your skin ends up trapping dirt, bacteria, and other debris in your pores and forming a clog. This environment fosters the growth of the bacteria which leads to inflammation and breakouts. Fortunately, acne is relatively easy to treat with over the country remedies or medication depending on the severity of the breakout.
These common skin disorders all represent things many of us have to deal with or will have to deal with at some point. As frustrating as some conditions can be, our collective skincare knowledge is such that many conditions that weren’t once easily treatable are now. It does take seeing a knowledgeable professional though. See your doctor or dermatologist if an unknown skin issue is troubling you. Getting the right treatment quickly will minimize the potential issues you experience in the future.