Home Health Can Dead Sea Salt Help Treat Psoriasis?

Can Dead Sea Salt Help Treat Psoriasis?

Asset ID: SBI-300878807
Texture of Dead sea.

  Medically reviewed by Reema Patel, MPA, PA-C — Written by Karen Veazey 

Psoriasis is an autoimmune disorder that causes skin cells to grow quickly. Dead Sea salt is an alternative treatment for psoriasis flares.

Psoriasis causes thick layers of plaques on the skin that may be itchy or painful. There is currently no cure for psoriasis, but some people use Dead Sea salt to reduce symptoms. Salt from the Dead Sea has high concentrations of magnesium, potassium, and calcium.

What is Dead Sea salt? 

The Dead Sea sits between Jordan, Israel, and the West Bank. It has a salt content of 34.8%, making it one of the saltiest bodies of water in the world. It is also rich in other minerals, including:

  • magnesium
  • potassium
  • calcium
  • sulfur
  • iodine
  • bromine

Some beauty and health products contain Dead Sea salt, including products for psoriasis and other skin treatments.

Possible benefits for psoriasis

In an older study, participants each bathed one of their arms with psoriasis symptoms in a solution containing 5% Dead Sea salt for 15 minutes at a time over 6 weeks. They bathed the other arm in tap water during the same period for comparison.

The arms submerged in Dead Sea salt water showed improved skin hydration and reduced roughness and redness after 6 weeks. This may be due to the magnesium salts enhancing the binding of water into the skin.

Another older study from 2001 evaluated the effectiveness of Dead Sea salt baths compared with common table salt baths over 3 weeks to treat psoriasis flares.

There was a greater reduction in symptoms for the group treated with Dead Sea salt baths than those bathing with common table salt.

Dead Sea salt vs. Epsom salt

Epsom salt is a popular home remedy for sore muscles and aching joints. Some people also use it as a treatment for psoriasis. Epsom salt contains magnesium sulfate, which can also hydrate the layers of the skin.

However, there is a lack of evidence that the magnesium in Epsom salt can penetrate the skin and provide the same benefit as Dead Sea salt.

2017 review examined Epsom salt and Dead Sea salt studies to see if the magnesium present could penetrate the skin. The review found one study where Epsom salt could increase blood magnesium levels, but this was not published in a scientific journal.

Another study mentioned in the review asked participants with psoriasis to bathe daily in the Dead Sea over 4 weeks. Blood tests revealed increased levels of electrolytes and magnesium, suggesting that the Dead Sea salt minerals were able to penetrate the skin.

Learn more about Epsom salt here.

Risks

There is low risk when using Dead Sea salt for treating psoriasis. It is also useful for washing hair, cleansing the face, and soaking fingers or toenails to alleviate fungus.

It is not for oral consumption, as the minerals and magnesium give Dead Sea salt a bitter taste. Product manufacturers typically remove the elements that cause a bitter taste when using Dead Sea salt in foods.

How to use Dead Sea salt

Dead Sea salt for psoriasis is easy to use. It is available at many shops or through the internet. However, it may take some experimentation to determine the amount to use, as psoriasis affects people differently.

It is safest first to test how the skin reacts to Dead Sea salt. Mix one teaspoon of Dead Sea salt with warm water and apply to a small patch of skin before soaking in a bath. If there is an allergic reaction, do not proceed with a bath.

Begin with half a cup of Dead Sea salt in a full bath and soak for 15–20 minutes. If psoriasis scales do not loosen or respond with reduced itching, add Dead Sea salt in quarter-cup increments for each bath.

Where to buy

Dead Sea salt is widely available on the internet through major retailers and independent shops. It is also available locally at many retail chains and pharmacies.

It comes in amounts ranging from 1 pound to over 50 pounds.

Dead Sea salt looks similar to table salt. For this reason, some retailers offer a certificate of authenticity that confirms it is from the Dead Sea region.

Can people make Dead Sea salt at home?

It is not possible to make Dead Sea salt at home because of the specific chemical makeup of minerals in the Dead Sea.

Look for Dead Sea salt at local pharmacies or stores that supply bath soaps and salts. It is also available online. Certificates of authenticity are available from some retailers to prove that the salt came from the Dead Sea region.

Summary

Psoriasis is a chronic disorder that causes the overproduction of skin cells, which form scaly plaques. There are medical treatments for psoriasis, but some people experience uncomfortable side effects.

Alternative treatments to psoriasis include Dead Sea salt, which may moisturize the skin and remove plaques.

Some people travel to the Dead Sea to experience the effects of mineral waters, but others purchase Dead Sea salt for use at home. Dead Sea salt is available online or at local pharmacies or bath and beauty retailers.

Soaking in a Dead Sea salt bath solution at regular intervals over several weeks could help treat psoriasis.

MedicalNewsToday, posted on SouthFloridaReporter.comOct. 25, 2021

Republished with permission

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here