Psoriasis And Hydration


What is psoriasis?

Psoriasis is a skin condition that produces flaky patches of skin and scales. It is an immune-mediated disease that causes inflammation in the body; these signs of inflammation are visible and include raised plaques on the skin. This arises due to an overactive immune system; while ordinary skin cells grow and shed in a month, psoriasis causes skin cells to grow and attempt to shed in three or four days. As a result, skin cells accumulate on the surface of the skin. Several people describe that psoriasis causes burning, itching, and stinging sensations. The inflammation can be found on any part of the body, though they are frequently observed on the knees, scalp, and elbows.

Psoriasis can affect other tissues and organs in the body, and those with psoriasis might also go through other health conditions. Studies have shown that one in three people with psoriasis may develop psoriatic arthritis.1 It has been noted that psoriasis frequently has a characteristic appearance that doctors will recognise; however it can be mistaken for other skin diseases like eczema. The treatment of psoriasis relies on the amount of skin affected, how bad or painful the skin patches are, and the location of the inflammation. Therapies vary from ointments and creams, which are applied to the impacted areas, to drugs and ultraviolet light therapy.2


Symptoms of this skin condition include red and thickened patches of skin covered with silver-white scales. This is the most common form of psoriasis and is referred to as plaque psoriasis. The growth of these raised patches or plaques of skin is characterised by their flaky, crusty, itchy, and red nature. These patches or plaques vary from person to person and can develop on any part of the body. Occasionally the patches of skin may bleed, especially if they have been scratched; this carries the risk of infection. Psoriasis can also develop on fingernails and toenails; this leaves an irregular, pitted surface which grows thicker over time.3 The symptoms present as plaques on the scalp, which may be quite thick and look similar to dandruff; another sign of this condition is, therefore, hair loss. 

Water is essential for proper skin function.

The human body is made up of between 55 and 60 per cent water depending on age and body composition; every organ, tissue, and cell requires an adequate supply of water for proper function. This includes the largest organ, the skin. Dehydration can aggravate skin conditions like psoriasis.

Skin elasticity

Adequate hydration is vital for overall health and essential for proper skin function. The amount of water consumed relates to and affects skin hydration; this is because the skin is made up of many layers, and if it’s the outermost doesn't have enough water, the skin will lose elasticity and feel tough. Therefore, hydration is necessary for skin elasticity. 

Wound healing

The healing cycle of a wound develops through many stages, such as hemostasis, inflammation, proliferation, and maturation. The disruption of any part of this process leads to a longer healing time, and this disruption can be too little moisture or excess moisture, as studies have shown water plays a significant role in wound healing.4 When skin is damaged while a person is dehydrated, wound healing is slower, and there is a bigger chance of greater scarring. This is because the blood can deliver less oxygen, raising the chances of infection and further complications.4 

Hard water is especially bad for psoriasis

Hard water is not compatible with psoriasis. The presence of minerals and crystals in hard water might produce unpleasant feelings and form a drying layer on top of the skin. Studies have shown hard water to contribute to psoriasis; those with psoriasis are thus advised not to wash with hard water.5 

Moisturise from both inside and outside

Drinking water is not sufficient to help with psoriasis as further self-care measures are needed for the management of psoriasis; it is vital to keep skin moist. This can be done by applying moisturiser daily. No matter how much water is consumed, it is mandatory to avoid scratching. It could be helpful to apply a non-prescription anti-itch cream or use medicated shampoo for the scalp. It is also important to avoid psoriasis triggers. 


Psoriasis is a skin condition characterised by flaky patches of skin and scales. It is an immune reaction where inflammation in the body is visible on the skin as raised plaques. Symptoms of this condition include red and thickened patches of skin covered with silver-white scales: its most common form is known as plaque psoriasis. Studies have shown how important drinking water is for proper skin function, it aids in both wound healing and skin elasticity. However, water consumption may not be sufficient to help with psoriasis, other self-care measures are needed for management e.g. avoiding triggers, avoiding hard water and moisturising skin. Treatments for psoriasis include creams, ointments, drugs and ultraviolet light therapy.


  1. Psoriasis: causes, triggers and treatments [Internet]. [cited 2022 Nov 11]. Available from:
  2. Psoriasis | health information | bupa uk [Internet]. [cited 2022 Nov 11]. Available from:
  3. Psoriasis [Internet]. GOSH Hospital site. [cited 2022 Nov 11]. Available from:
  4. The importance of hydration for wound healing and scarring | biodermis. Com [Internet]. Biodermis. [cited 2022 Nov 11]. Available from:
  5. What are the effects of hard water on the skin [Internet]. UAE. [cited 2022 Nov 11]. Available from:

Iqra Khalif

Pharmaceutical Science, University of Hertfordshire

Iqra Khalif is a pharmaceutical scientist with deep roots in research and development. She has a leadership qualification in global health and is interested in strategising for innovation in the life sciences.
She currently works in data analytics and management for a health-tech startup. presents all health information in line with our terms and conditions. It is essential to understand that the medical information available on our platform is not intended to substitute the relationship between a patient and their physician or doctor, as well as any medical guidance they offer. Always consult with a healthcare professional before making any decisions based on the information found on our website.
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