Mentally, psoriasis can be challenging dealing with depression from psoriasis is a serious matter.
Anyone who has psoriasis can tell you that it’s not an easy disease to deal with. There are actually five different forms of psoriasis: plaque, inverse, pustular, guttate and erythrodermic. By far the most common type is the plaque variety. Plaque psoriasis occurs when skin cells grow at such a rapid rate that the body is unable to shed excess skin. As a result, skin cells accumulate on the surface, forming lesions. Often these lesions crack and bleed. Psoriasis is annoying at best and extremely painful at worst.
But there are many more problems caused by psoriasis than those that are obvious on the surface of the skin. Because of the pain and itching caused by the lesions, many psoriasis sufferers are unable to sleep, and this sleep deprivation wreaks havoc with their lives in many different ways. But an even more serious side effect from psoriasis is the depression that goes along with it. Most people are unfamiliar with the disease, which means that people may shy away from you or avoid contact, even though psoriasis is not contagious. Because of other people’s reaction to them, psoriasis sufferers are often embarrassed and ashamed of their condition. Understandably enough, this can often lead to depression.
If you suffer from psoriasis and the depression that so often accompanies it, there are some effective ways to deal with psychological fallout from the disease:
- Learn as much as possible about the disease and the latest psoriasis treatments available. Depending on the type of psoriasis you have, your age and the severity of the condition, there are generally three methods of psoriasis treatment that are available: 1) OTC psoriasis treatments like, topical ointments or creams that you apply directly on your skin; 2) exposing the skin to ultraviolet light; and 3) systemic treatment, which is taken either orally or by injection. If you feel that your treatment isn’t working as effectively as it might be, talk to your doctor and find out if there are other options available to you.
- Join a psoriasis support group. There are many different groups available online. It often helps to discuss how you’re feeling with other people who are experiencing the same symptoms caused by the same disease.
- Get some exercise. You may not feel like doing it, but physical activity is one of the best treatments for depression.
- Keep a journal. Writing down your emotions can help you to understand how you’re feeling in more detail. It may also give you a different perspective on your situation and help to improve your overall state of mind.
- Be around friends and family as much as possible. Whatever the reason may be for depression, whether it’s psoriasis or something altogether different, isolation is not the answer. Try to spend as much time as possible with friends and family—people who understand your condition.
- Whatever you do, don’t drink or take drugs in an effort to bury your feelings. Alcohol or narcotics will not only worsen your depression, but they could very well leave you with a whole new set of problems to deal with.
- Don’t be afraid to see a psychologist or psychiatrist if you need to. These professionals can not only help you to cope with your depression, they can also make sure that psoriasis is in fact the cause and not some other underlying problem.
Because there is no cure for psoriasis, it’s important to learn the best ways to live with your condition. Fortunately, there is plenty of help available. Often the best place to start is with a candid talk with your doctor. He or she can help to point you in the right direction so you can learn how best to cope with the disease and live a happy, healthy, fulfilled life.
Roxanne Jones is a health blogger who writes for Cadiz Laser Spa, an Austin medical spa that provides laser skin treatment by highly trained medical professionals. For more information, contact the team at Cadiz Laser Spa, 5656 Bee Caves Road, Austin, TX 78746, Phone (512) 306-1619.