Thursday, August 4, 2011

Using Light Therapy For Psoriasis Treatment

While finding the most effective treatment for psoriasis can be a challenge including finding effective home remedies for psoriasis, light therapy for psoriasis is another treatment method that has been found to be effective for many psoriasis sufferers. The use of natural sunlight or artificial light for the treatment of psoriasis has been known to be beneficial for those with psoriasis.

Light Therapy For Psoriasis

Usually finding the treatment that works to prevent psoriasis flare-ups will involve a lot of trial and error especially if you are searching for natural psoriasis treatments that will help you reduce or eliminate the various symptoms of psoriasis. This is certainly true when experimenting with various home remedies for psoriasis and what is more natural than using sunlight to treat psoriasis.

While sunlight is natural, it can also be deadly if care is not used when using light therapy for psoriasis. There are three types of radiation that are associated with sunlight – ultraviolet (UV) radiation, infrared radiation and the visible light spectrum.

  1. Ultraviolet Radiation

Ultraviolet light waves are the most effective light therapy for psoriasis treatment.

  1. Infrared Radiation

This light cannot be seen but can be felt in the form of heat in some cases (longer infrared light waves). Shorter infrared light waves on the other hand cannot be felt.

  1. Visible Light Spectrum

These are the only light waves that can be seen and they are seen in the form of colors of the rainbow.

UV Light Waves and Psoriasis

As mentioned previously, UV light waves are the most beneficial part of sunlight that are generally used during light therapy for psoriasis. The three types of UV rays in sunlight are;

  • UVC
  • UVB
  • UVA

Light therapy for psoriasis uses mainly UVA and/or UVB light waves. UVC rays cannot penetrate the earth's protective ozone layer.

UVB rays are the main part of sunlight that cause a change in skin color or a tan and these rays are also responsible for sunburn. UVB can be used on their own or in combination with various other treatments including home remedies for psoriasis in order to treat psoriasis and prevent flare-ups.

In the case of the use of UVA rays during light therapy for psoriasis, the treatment is only effective when the UVA rays are combined with psoralen which is a chemical that reacts with someone's DNA when in the presence of light and is mainly used in light therapy for severe acne and psoriasis. Using UVA rays without combining with psoralen will usually be ineffective in the treatment of psoriasis.

Precautions With Light Therapy For Psoriasis

While light therapy for psoriasis is an effective treatment, many dangers still persist and it is important to consult with your doctor before beginning this therapy. It is very important to gain an understanding of how your skin will react when light therapy is administered. You will need to let your doctor know first if you are taking any medications that may increase your sensitivity to UV rays, if you have other health problems that may also increase your sensitivity to UV rays as well as if you have a history of skin cancer.

If you have a history of skin cancer, light therapy for psoriasis should be avoided to prevent you from increasing your risk of developing new skin cancers. Using artificial light sources such as those used in phototherapy can increase your risk of developing melanoma (the most severe type of skin cancer) especially if the therapy is for an extended period. When using light therapy over an extended period, it is advisable to have your skin regularly checked to ensure that you do not develop melanoma or other skin cancers.

There are many therapies that are effective for treating psoriasis such as drugs, following a psoriasis diet, home remedies for psoriasis, etc, and light therapy for psoriasis is another beneficial treatment for patients with psoriasis. Before beginning this therapy, it is important to talk to your doctor because of the various damaging effects of sunlight and artificial light including skin cancers and premature aging.

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