Psoriasis in children or adolescents may occur, and it is common that most patients experience their first psoriasis symptoms during childhood. Over 50% of patients will have signs of psoriasis before the age of 16. It is important to detect and manage psoriasis from as early as it occurs, so that the patient can lead a normal life.
Signs of Psoriasis in Children
The onset of psoriasis during childhood or adolescence will manifest through skin lesions, which can be milder or more severe. There may also be additional symptoms involving the joints. It is important to detect these signs and start applying treatment. Some medications may not be approved for use in children and adolescents with psoriasis. However, recent studies have shown that topical treatments, systemic therapy, as well as phototherapy can be safely applied in children and adolescents with psoriasis.
Most children will receive biologic therapeutics, as these are considered the safest in children and adolescents since they won’t interfere with the growing process. In some adolescents, due to the body changes, the psoriasis may become less aggressive and in rare cases, a full remission is possible.
Educating Children and Adolescents with Psoriasis
Children and adolescents with psoriasis should be educated to accept the disease and get help to apply treatment whenever this is needed. Young patients with psoriasis should be familiar with the disease outbreaks and the use of topical ointments to reduce the appearance of the skin lesions.
Some children or adolescents with psoriasis will require counseling, which will help them cope with the disease.