Menu

How You Can Treat Psoriasis Cracks and Bleeding

Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario, MD on November 10, 2020

When you have psoriasis, you have patches of thick red skin. In severe cases, they can split open. This causes deep cracks, or “fissures.”

There are ways you can ease the pain and treat the bleeding.

1. Treat the cuts.

First, stop the bleeding. Use a clean cloth or bandage to apply steady pressure for 10 minutes. Don’t lift it up to check the wound. When the bleeding stops, rinse the area with cool or lukewarm water. This helps prevent infection.

2. Seal the crack.

Closing those gaps helps them heal faster. It also protects the wound by keeping out dirt, debris, and germs. Ways you can do it include:

Liquid bandage: This over-the-counter product creates a thin plastic coating on the skin. It’s waterproof and flexible. To apply it:

  • Gently bring the edges of the crack or cut together.
  • Spray, brush, or dab the liquid on top of the skin.

It dries in less than a minute and lasts for up to a week.

Continued

Because some of these products are made with alcohol, this might sting. Don’t put it inside a wound, around the eyes, or on large areas of skin.

Super glue: This household staple can fix psoriasis fissures, too. That’s because its main ingredient is the same one found in many liquid bandages. It works in the same way: Carefully bring the edges of the cut or crack together, and dab it to the skin on top to create a seal.

Adhesive bandage or tape: Watertight medical tape can seal cracks. It also keeps the wound moist, which helps it heal. For small cuts, you can also use the sticky part of a bandage. Put them across the wound. They can act as a bridge to hold the skin together.

3. For a quick fix, use lip balm.

You’re out and about when your skin splits. Now what?

If it’s a small cut, put a thick layer of lip balm or petroleum jelly on it. This’ll protect your skin until you’re able to treat it properly.

Continued

4. Soften the skin.

Thick, dry patches worsen cracking and bleeding. They can also lead to more fissures. Take these steps to keep your skin moist:

Soak in a lukewarm bath for 15 minutes. Avoid hot water and harsh soaps. They can dry you out. To ease the itching and irritation, you can add:

  • Oils
  • Epsom salts
  • Colloidal oatmeal
  • Dead Sea salts

When you get out, pat your skin dry with a towel. Then put on an emollient ointment, cream, or oil.

How Biologics Treat PsoriasisScientists can use living cells grown in a lab to make powerful drugs to calm psoriasis symptoms.50

SPEAKER: Scientists can use

living cells grown in a lab

to make powerful drugs

that fight psoriasis.

These medicines are called

biologics.



When you have psoriasis,

your immune system mistakenly

attacks healthy skin cells.



Your doctor might recommend one

of these drugs for you

if you have

moderate to severe symptoms that

didn't get better after you

tried other treatments.

You're given a biologic

through a shot or an IV drip,

and it could start clearing up

your skin within weeks.



Ask your doctor about the side

effects first though.

Among the more serious ones,

biologics could raise

your chances of getting

a dangerous infection.

That's why it's

important to weigh all the pros

and cons before you start

treatment.

National Psoriasis Foundation: “Moderate to Severe Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis: Biologic Drugs,” “The Immune System and Psoriasis.”<br> UpToDate: “Patient education: Psoriasis (Beyond the Basics).”<br> Mayo Clinic: “Psoriasis.”<br> National Eczema Foundation: “Understanding Biologic Drugs.”/delivery/aws/23/fa/23fa5e0f-dea0-380a-a70f-481b4b0082fa/091e9c5e81dd5736_funded-vo-feature-how-biologics-treat-psoriasis_,4500k,2500k,1000k,750k,400k,.mp401/03/2020 12:00:0018001200photo of iv drip/webmd/consumer_assets/site_images/article_thumbnails/video/funded_feature_vo_how_biologics_treat_psoriasis_video/1800x1200_funded_feature_vo_how_biologics_treat_psoriasis_video.jpg091e9c5e81dd5736

At bedtime, slather on some moisturizing ointment, like petroleum jelly. Other options include:

  • Vitamin E
  • Olive oil
  • Shortening

Then cover the area to lock in the moisture overnight. You can use plastic. Wear cotton gloves and socks to protect your hands and feet.

Reapply moisturizer at least twice a day. Think ointment or oil is too greasy? Try a thick cream instead of a thin lotion.

5. Apply a medicated lotion, cream, or ointment.

Your skin cracks when it gets too dry, tight, and stretched. To help existing wounds heal -- and prevent new ones -- you need to can the inflammation that causes the swelling.

The first line of treatment is a corticosteroid lotion, cream, or ointment. They’re available over the counter or as a prescription in higher doses. Put it on once or twice a day. Don’t use it for more than 3 weeks without your doctor’s permission.

WebMD Medical Reference

Sources

SOURCES:

James Swan, MD, professor of dermatology, Loyola University Medical Center.

Dominic Ricci, MD, dermatologist, Baylor Scott & White Health.

CDC: “Psoriasis.”

Seattle Children’s Hospital: “Cuts, Scrapes or Bruises.”

National Psoriasis Foundation: “Hands, Feet, and Nails.”

U.S. Department of Health & Human Services: “Household Products Database.”

National Psoriasis Foundation: “Topical Treatments.”

American Academy for Dermatology: “Psoriasis: Recommendations for Topical Corticosteroids.”

© 2021 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

Pagination