Morphea is a rare skin condition that is known to affect less than 3 out of 1 million individuals. It is also known as localized scleroderma, as this type is more common that it’s other variants, such as generalized, linear or pansclerotic forms. It is more commonly seen in females than in males and generally found on the trunk portion of the body than any other parts followed by extremities and on rare cases face. It is caused by overactivation of fibroblasts responsible for increased production of collagen, the cause of which is still unclear. This can lead to hardening and thickening of the skin in the affected area.
Home Remedies For Morphea
Since, the cause of Morphea condition is unknown and many hypotheses have been formulated including autoimmunity, repeated trauma to the affected site, predisposing infections, irradiation and treatment with certain medications. It is wise for the patients to make certain lifestyle changes with diet and exercise to avoid all these triggers that might increase the risk of developing the disease. Having another autoimmune disease predisposes a person to additional autoimmune disease, so patients with other autoimmune disease should consult their health care providers and get proper screening for any other autoimmune conditions.
Having a balanced nutrition is a good home remedy and it plays an important role in a person health and well-being. Eating fresh foods and fruits have known to relieve symptoms of the disease and slowing the progression too. The changes include minimizing intake of animal food sources, along with milk and milk products and consuming low protein and high carbohydrate diet. Food sources with high concentrations of omega-3 fatty acids have known to have a beneficial effect in morphea related skin conditions, so it is advisable to eat sources of rich omega-3 fatty acids such as fishes and walnuts. Foods with animal sources have been known to consist of hormones, ingredients and toxins that may imbalance an individual’s hormonal levels and affect immunity. Red clovers and cleaver herbs have known effects to clear toxins and purify blood allowing nutrients to reach the skin and underlying tissues.
Regular exercising, such as aerobics, yoga, tai chi or qigong can help stabilize body and combat stress. In cases where hands or legs are involved and limit movement, stretches can help. Stress is the secondary cause for about 80% diseases in today’s busy lifestyle, so it is important to relax body and mind with relaxation techniques, with meditation, biofeedback, self-hypnosis and other techniques that support and promote inner peace.
Surrounding yourself with people who support you is necessary, because this condition can affect a person mentally and emotionally. It is important to share your experiences and thoughts with people around you to avoid emotional and mental stress. You can also join support group to get connected with people who are going through the same pain and know that you are not alone in this journey.
Although, the condition is relatively benign and does not pose any health limitations, except, for the linear or pansclerotic forms, which have a tendency to affect the deeper layers of skin, including the muscles and bones. They can lead to physical deformity or limb limitation when underlying bone is affected. Morphea usually presents as asymptomatic round or oval, reddish-purple lesion with a white center that regresses slowly in 3-5 years, but leaves behind a hyperpigmented and discolored area. It also tends to recur in some cases.
Most patients with morphea do not seek treatment as this is an asymptomatic condition; however, some may look for treatment as it may compromise their esthetic appearance or in deep pansclerotic variants may be cause physical debility, which necessitates management of symptoms.
Corticosteroid creams and injections can be helpful for inflammation in early stages of the condition. Calcipotriene (vitamin D derivative) along with tacrolimus have also been found to be helpful in some cases. Phototherapy and immunomodulatory agents such as methotrexate have also been used for morphea to reduce the severity of symptoms for deep lesions. Although, all these treatment options are used with varying success, there is no specific treatment option to cure the condition, just to limit the symptoms and progression of the disease.