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Can I Do Phototherapy at Home for My Psoriasis?

By Leah Campbell
Reviewed by Allison Truong, M.D.
March 16, 2022

Phototherapy is one of the many treatment options available for psoriasis. Also referred to as light therapy, it involves repeated exposure to specific wavelengths of ultraviolet light. It’s also one of the oldest and safest dermatological treatments. Phototherapy works very well to reduce skin inflammation and help make psoriatic plaques disappear, sometimes putting patients into remission for months, or even longer. Plus, it doesn’t interfere with other medications and doesn't require pills or injections, says Scott Paviol, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist in Charlotte, North Carolina. When patients ask for natural treatments for psoriasis, this is one of the most evidence-based options out there.

In phototherapy, the success of treatment requires regular sessions and consistency. Usually, at a dermatologist’s office, treatment is administered three times a week for several months, and then slowly tapers in frequency over several more weeks. The entire process can be expensive and time-consuming. So you might wonder: How does an at-home phototherapy machine compare? Here, we explain the options, safety, and efficacy of at-home phototherapy units.

Tanning Beds

Many people assume that using a tanning bed may offer similar benefits as phototherapy. But it’s really not a good idea.

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