A few case reports suggest homeopathy may have helped some people with psoriasis, but more research is necessary. Allopathy, which involves conventional drugs, has more high quality studies showing its effectiveness.

A 2019 case report describes six cases where people recovered from a psoriasis flare-up or an associated skin infection after receiving homeopathic treatment. However, this is a small number of individuals.

In general, there is little reliable evidence that homeopathy can treat any condition. Medical experts also have various concerns about the safety of homeopathic remedies since the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate them.

Keep reading to learn more about homeopathy for psoriasis, including whether it works, the risks, and how it compares to Ayurveda and allopathic medications.

This article includes personal insight from an individual with psoriasis.

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There is very little evidence that homeopathy is a reliable, effective, or safe treatment for psoriasis.

Homeopathy derives from two theories. The first is that the cure for a disease may come from a substance that produces similar symptoms in healthy people. The idea is that this will trigger the immune system response.

For example, if someone has an infection, a homeopathy practitioner might recommend a substance that produces fever in healthy people, as this is one of the symptoms.

The second theory is that the lower the dose of a medication, the greater its effect in triggering the body’s defenses against disease.

Some case reports suggest homeopathy may have helped certain individuals with psoriasis. For example, a 2019 case report describes six cases involving the condition that appeared to respond well to homeopathy. The authors say that the treatment improved symptoms and general well-being.

However, these reports have some limitations. Firstly, it had six participants — a very low number for a study — and the report’s authors say there may have been selection bias. This means there could have been a preference toward candidates who had favorable results from their treatment.

Secondly, there was no control group that would allow the authors to compare the effects of homeopathic treatment versus conventional, or “allopathic,” medicine or against no treatment at all. This means it is unclear if homeopathy would have worked better than typical psoriasis treatments or against a placebo.

With this in mind, larger controlled trials are necessary to determine if this approach can treat psoriasis effectively.

Homeopathic remedies can contain many different types of ingredients, from herbs to heavy metals. Some examples of remedies a homeopathic practitioner might suggest for psoriasis include:

  • sulfur
  • nickel
  • graphites, which come from carbon
  • arsenicum album, which is a dilution of the toxic metal arsenic
  • natrum sulphuricum, which is a dilution of sodium sulfate

However, no evidence proves any of these ingredients are effective for psoriasis.

Personal story: My homeopathy journey for psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis

I explored various homeopathic treatments in search of relief from psoriasis symptoms. Neem oil and turmeric-based remedies were among those attempted, albeit with limited success.

While providing temporary relief, these treatments failed to address the underlying inflammation and joint involvement characteristic of psoriatic arthritis. I still drink turmeric lattes, feeling that I don’t want to know life without it, should I start aching again!

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The National Institutes of Health (NIH) reports several safety concerns about homeopathy. They include:

  • Unclear side effects: There are no standardized doses for homeopathic remedies. Although many products feature very diluted solutions of active ingredients, some contain sufficiently large quantities to cause side effects and drug interactions.
  • Toxicity: Some homeopathic products contain heavy metals, which are toxic. In some remedies, there may be a high enough amount to cause side effects, some of which may be serious.
  • Complications: A 2012 review assessed previous reports on homeopathic remedies. It found the products can cause side effects themselves, but they also pose a risk if people substitute conventional medicines for homeopathy. The effects ranged from mild to severe and included four deaths.

People should not take a homeopathic remedy without talking with a doctor first.

Ayurveda is an ancient medical system that aims to balance the body, mind, and spirit. It is a complete medical system with different theories and approaches to homeopathy.

Since there are very few studies on homeopathy for psoriasis, there are also few that compare the effectiveness of homeopathy against Ayurveda.

A 2021 case report details someone with psoriasis who underwent Ayurveda treatment and experienced complete remission. An additional 2021 case report has similar results. Despite these positive results, these two case reports fall short of the scientific evidence necessary to prove safety and effectiveness.

Additionally, some of the herbs in Ayurveda can cause side effects or interact with conventional medications.

Allopathy is an older term for conventional medications. While allopathic medications for psoriasis offer no cure for the condition, they can manage the symptoms and improve quality of life. They also have more high quality studies showing their effectiveness.

Conventional treatment for psoriasis may involve topical products, such as:

There are also systemic treatments that affect the whole body, such as:

  • oral retinoids
  • methotrexate, which slows the growth of plaques
  • immunosuppressants, which tone down an overactive immune system and are appropriate for severe cases
  • phototherapy, which involves exposing the skin to UV light

Although allopathic medications have side effects, it is important to note that the FDA has evaluated all of them for their safety and effectiveness. This contrasts with homeopathic remedies, which do not have this advantage.

Personal story: My allopathy journey to treat psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis

One of the most effective treatments for psoriasis has been the biweekly tumor necrosis factor inhibitor (TNF) injections, which have significantly improved joint pain and stiffness while clearing the majority of psoriasis symptoms. Additionally, steroid ointments and hemp-based creams have proven useful in managing psoriasis flare-ups.

Living with psoriatic arthritis presents unique challenges, requiring resilience, adaptation, and a willingness to explore various treatment options. While the journey may be fraught with uncertainties and setbacks, there is hope in finding effective strategies for managing symptoms and improving quality of life.

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Some case reports on homeopathy for psoriasis indicate that it may help, but they have significant limitations. Much more research is necessary to prove the value and safety of homeopathy for this condition.

Homeopathic products for psoriasis may include potentially harmful ingredients, such as sulfur or nickel, none of which have FDA approval as a medical treatment. These products can also cause side effects, ranging from mild to serious.

While allopathic or conventional medications have side effects and cannot cure psoriasis, none can enter the market without FDA approval. This makes them a safer treatment option. FDA approval also means that science supports the claims concerning the effectiveness of the medications.

It is important to speak with a doctor before trying any alternative medicine, particularly if a person is taking other medications.