Research has found that there seems to be a psoriasis and depression link because people with psoriasis seem to be twice as likely to become depressed as the general population. We shall look into some of the factors that can lead to depression when you have psoriasis as well as some tips on managing this depression using natural methods.
While you may initially be glad and relieved that you finally have a name for what you are dealing with, as you start learning more about this skin condition and how it may affect your life, it may affect your emotional state.
Although depression can have genetic roots or even biologic causes, many psoriasis sufferers have noted becoming depressed due to the following factors;
- Knowing that there is currently no cure for this chronic skin disease having to deal with this for the rest of their lives.
- Because it is a chronic disease which is very unpredictable, they may be worried about how severe it will get, side effects of medications, intimacy concerns, how to deal with it during pregnancy when medications cannot usually be taken, etc.
- Being embarrassed and self conscious about the psoriasis lesions which can lead to social isolation, fear of being rejected and depression.
- Dealing with feelings of hopelessness and powerlessness over this chronic skin disease.
- They may be the only person in their family to have this disease.
- Anger about this diagnosis.
- Feel like the universe is punishing them with this disease.
- Feel socially isolated if they don’t know anyone else with this condition.
All these reasons and many others can explain the psoriasis and depression link and why sufferers and their families need to be aware of this link in order to take proactive steps to deal with depression should it make its unwelcome appearance.
It is important to remember that it is normal to go through denial, feel sad, angry, socially withdraw and generally feel powerless once you get this diagnosis. But most people generally become more accepting and understanding of the diagnosis.
But the depression can become more severe if you start crying frequently for days or even weeks, when you stop participating in activities that you used to take pleasure in, socially withdraw for days, weeks and even months, start sleeping too much or other changes in your sleep patterns, etc.
Tips to overcome depression
While there is a psoriasis and depression link, if the dark cloud of depression makes its appearance, you can certainly take various pharmaceutical antidepressants which are not only expensive but can be habit forming in addition to many other side effects. To avoid the potential problems that these pharmaceuticals can cause, there are some natural remedies that may work just as well if not better.
It is important to overcome depression because you will be in a better state of mind to start accepting and taking effective steps to treat it and keep psoriasis lesions few and far between. Because there is no cure, having a positive outlook will help you not give up from finding a solution even when one remedy or another does not work.
Some natural remedies you can try to prevent depression from taking control of your life include but are not limited to;
- Talking to someone understanding even a therapist about what you are feeling and going through with this condition.
- Meditation and other relaxation techniques such as taking a relaxing bath can lift your mood.
- Daily exercise especially aerobic exercise has been shown to improve mood and outlook.
- Get outside and get some sun or invest in a light therapy device because phototherapy has been found to be very effective for fighting depression.
- Fish oil in food or in supplement form is not only beneficial for treating psoriasis naturally but fish oil can also be helpful against depression.
- St. John’s wort is an herb that has been shown to be as effective as prescription antidepressants without the side effects that come with the latter such as addiction.
- Start taking a 5-FTP (hydroxytryptophan) supplement. Depression and many other health issues can result from low levels of serotonin, the “feel good” neurotransmitter in the brain. Through a complicated process, the body converts 5-FTP with the help of vitamin B5 into serotonin. Increased levels of serotonin may help eliminate depression. 5-FTP can also help you sleep better because when darkness descends, 5-FTP is turned into melatonin which is important for great sleep.
While there is a psoriasis and depression link that every patient should be aware of, you do not have to let depression rule your life and make an already difficult situation worse. Getting a psoriasis diagnosis does not mean that your life is over.
While you may feel powerless at times because of this disease, this is not true because even through there isn’t a cure, there are many methods that can help you combat this disease and keep flare-ups to a minimum. Find out more about the natural methods that are in your control with the help of the guide discussed here.