Psoriasis: Triggers to Avoid the Flare-Ups

Avoid alcohol, excess stress and other things as mentioned here to avoid psoriasis flare up.

3 min read
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Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease and approximately 125 million are affected by this condition worldwide including 3.5% from the US. Psoriasis affects the skin and joints of the person resulting in red, inflamed, swelled up skin with difficulty in moving at times.

Though the causes of psoriasis are genetic mutations, excessive drinking, obesity, and stress, there are other things that may cause but often trigger the occasional flare-ups or make the condition worse.


According to JAMA Dermatology, alcohol is more likely to trigger psoriasis flare-ups, especially in women. The starch in the beer might be the contributing factor, besides the production of inflammatory proteins that result in psoriasis infections.

According to PubMed, one-third of the people suffering from psoriasis make the flare-ups worse due to their drinking issues. It is better for them to be careful of their drinking habits.



There is a complicated relationship between psoriasis flare-ups and an increase in your day-to-day stress. According to PubMed Central, stress was found to give rise to psoriasis symptoms in 33-80% of the patients. there are various ways to manage the symptoms that were a result of stress like-

  • Behavioral therapy

  • Relaxation

  • Meditation

  • Biofeedback

Excess Sunlight 

There are various pieces of evidence that sunlight can be used in phototherapy to reduce the severity of psoriasis but long-term exposure may aggravate the condition and result in injury, skin damage, melanoma and sunburns as well.

It is better to keep a tab on your sunbathing routine and do not forget to wear sunglasses, and apply sunscreen while you are out to enjoy the benefits of the sun.


According to National Psoriasis Foundation, heavy smokers or people who have been smoking for a long time have doubled their risk of psoriasis, and the people already suffering might experience frequent and severe flare-ups.

It is better to make a few behavioral and lifestyle changes and try quitting smoking to avoid the worsening of the condition or even the development of the condition later in life.


According to the doctors of Mayo clinic, psoriasis is an auto-immune disease and that is why psoriasis-related flare-ups may be triggered after 1-2 weeks of infections like bronchitis, tonsillitis, ear infection, throat infection, etc because these infections weaken the immune system and psoriasis is also an immune system related condition.


Certain Medicines 

Everyone is suffering from more than one condition nowadays and it becomes more important to make lifestyle and dietary changes to improve your health without medications because certain medications may trigger other existing conditions.

According to US NIH, certain medications may be responsible for psoriasis flare-ups. For example,

  • Anti-malarial drugs

  • Beta-blockers

  • Bupropion

  • Certain cancer therapies, etc.

Certain Foods

There is no certain diet for the patients suffering from psoriasis but there might be foods that might make the condition worse or trigger the flare-ups. Therefore the doctors of Mayo Clinic advise avoiding certain foods like;

  • shellfish

  • pork

  • meat

  • tomatoes, eggplant, tomatoes

  • dairy products

  • gluten

Skin Injuries

Psoriasis results in red, itchy, inflamed, and scaly skin. It is a condition that primarily affects the skin and therefore other infections or injuries on the skin may just worsen the condition or trigger the occasional flare-ups.

American Academy of Dermatologists includes these injuries in the list: bug bites, scratches, spider bites, bruises, cuts, vaccinations, and sunburns. The organisation advises using repellants, avoid scratching, and immediate treatment in such situations.


According to the doctors of Mayo Clinic and the National Psoriasis Foundation, obesity increases the risk of psoriasis and weight management is one of the best ways to control and reduce the frequency of flare-ups and even prevent the development of the condition.

Hormonal Changes

Everyone goes through hormonal changes throughout their lifetime and it affects the condition of psoriasis. Menopause, puberty, and pregnancy are the life phases that can be responsible for psoriasis triggering hormonal changes.

According to PubMed Central, these hormones may include:

  • ghrelin, leptin, and insulin are associated with diabetes and obesity.

  • thyroid hormones

  • prolactin which plays a major role in reproduction and breastfeeding

  • stress-related hormones like epinephrine and cortisol

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Topics:  Psoriasis 

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