If you have psoriasis you know how difficult it can be to deal with this problem and you will want to do anything possible to keep the condition under control. Taking proper medication and avoiding common triggers is not enough, though, you will need to take care of your stress levels as well!
Psoriasis and stress are linked in a very intricate manner, and although psoriasis is genetic, stressful life can trigger the condition and make it even worse. Therefore, it is of absolute essence that you think about stress management as a crucial part of your psoriasis treatment.
Why is Stress a Trigger for Psoriasis?
When you are under a lot of stress, your brain sends a signal to the chemicals in your body that causes an inflammation to help heal the metaphorical wound that stress caused. In people with psoriasis, the immune system sends out too many of these chemicals which flare up the skin condition. Since psoriasis is an inflammatory condition, it flares up swiftly and easily when a person is under stress and improves when you relax.
A person with psoriasis may wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants in warm weather, instead of opting for more appropriate attire in hot weather because they want to hide their skin, and this causes them to feel self-conscious and even more emotionally stressed, which makes their psoriasis flare up even more than it would normally. So, focusing on stress management can help with the management of your psoriasis as well.
Stress Management as a Treatment for Psoriasis
Meditation. Meditation has been around for centuries, and it is quite a popular method of relaxation. It is a good way to clear the mind and relieve anxiety, and, best of all, it is completely free and easy to do. If you cannot empty your mind yourself, you can take help in the form of guided meditation audios that you can easily find on YouTube. Try to sit in a comfortable position or lay down if you prefer, close your eyes, and focus on your breathing. Try doing this for 15 minutes each day and feel the stress fly away.
Exercise. When you exercise, the production of endorphins increases so you feel less stressed. Try to do some light activities for 30 minutes a day if you are a beginner, and then you can progress to a more serious exercise routine. Not only will you feel relaxed and generally happier, you will also look amazing, and improve your overall health. You will reduce the risk of coronary disease, you will give your arteries a break, and your skin will glow like never before.
Stay away from drugs and alcohol. Although drugs and alcohol are used as a stress diminished by some people, they can actually make your stress levels worse than ever! Addictive behaviors such as alcoholism, smoking, and drug abuse, can actually aggravate your psoriasis and elevate the stress levels, making it very hard for you to get back on the good track.
Take up a hobby. People who have enjoyable hobbies are usually less stressed than people who don’t, so why not try to learn something new or do something that pleases you more often. Whatever it is, try to take a portion of your day and dedicate it to an activity that makes you happy, whether it is painting, hiking, or something else.
Get a massage. Find a massage therapist who has previously worked with individuals with psoriasis and get a relaxing massage. A massage will ease the muscle tension, help you relax, and lower your stress levels.
Get professional help. You can always go to a specialized therapist who can help you deal with stress if you cannot manage it yourself. There is a myriad of good therapists who will be able to help you cope with psoriasis related stress and other situations that prevent you from relaxing and living your life to the fullest. Investing in your mental health is the most important thing you can do for yourself. Managing your emotional issues and learning ways of calming yourself are some of the things a therapist can teach you.
Connect with a support group. Nowadays, there are a lot of support groups for people who are battling psoriasis in their daily lives. Search the Internet to find a local support group and connect with people who are going through the same thing as you. You will make friends and have someone who understands your issue that you can talk to.