Psoriasis vs. Seborrheic Dermatitis

Is your scalp itchy? Is it dry and flakey, too? For many people, this is a common problem. There are many skin conditions that can cause this, two of which are psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis.

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Psoriasis and Seborrheic Dermatitis

Psoriasis is a chronic skin disease that causes cells to grow at an abnormal rate. The cells collect on the skin’s surface causing itchy, rough patches, which can appear anywhere on the body, including the scalp.

Seborrheic dermatitis, more commonly known as dandruff, is very similar to psoriasis. While this condition also causes dry, itchy skin, it usually only appears on the scalp, chest or face.

So how can you tell the difference?

One of the biggest differences is in the scale. Psoriasis tends to have thick, silvery scales, while seborrheic dermatitis has thinner white or yellow scales. In seborrheic dermatitis, the scales often appear greasy but can sometimes flake off.

There are some other clues to help differentiate between the two conditions. Psoriasis often runs in families, and can affect other parts of the body such as the elbows, knees, and nails. Seborrheic dermatitis tends to stay limited to the scalp and eyebrows.

Regardless, both conditions can be treated by your dermatologist, and they can help you figure out the correct diagnosis.

Do you need to see a doctor?

Psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis may not be life threatening, but they can certainly be a nuisance. If you have any concerns about your skin, make an appointment with Dr. Hawley today to find the right treatment plan for you.