Psoriasis was found to be influenced by stress and linked to itchy skin, hyperhidrosis, and flaky patches on scalp. The percentage of psoriasis patients who believe that stress affects their skin is quite high – between 37 and 87 percent. Stress may worsen psoriasis and even lengthen the time for the disease to clear.
A study was conducted by the researchers at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University. The scientists found that elevated stress levels were associated with more skin complaints from undergraduate students.
Corresponding author Gil Yosopovitch said, “Previous studies have demonstrated an association between stress and skin symptoms, but those studies relied on small patient samples, did not use standardized tools, are anecdotal in nature, or focused their analyses on a single skin disease.”
Other studies have also linked stress to skin conditions, including atopic dermatitis, acne vulgaris, and chronic urticaria.
For the Temple University study, researchers collected questionnaires from 422 students. Respondents were placed in one of three categories: Low stress, moderate stress, and high stress. The high stress group had greater complaints of itchy skin, hair loss, oily, waxy, or flaky patches on the scalp, excessive sweating (hyperhidrosis), scaly skin, nail biting, hair pulling, and itchy rashes on their hands, in comparison to the low stress group. On the other hand, no association was found between high stress and pimples, warts or other facial rashes.
Dr. Yosopovitch explained, “Our findings highlight the need for health care/dermatology providers to ask these patients about their perceived levels of psychological stress. Disease flare or exacerbation while on treatment in the setting of increased stress may not necessarily reflect treatment failure. These findings further suggest that non-pharmacologic therapeutic interventions should be considered for patients presenting with both skin conditions and heightened levels of psychological stress.”
Stress has been linked to negative health outcomes, so it’s of no surprise that it can wreak havoc on your skin. Here are eight ways in which stress affects your skin.
As you can see, stress can take a negative toll on your skin, so this is just another reason why you should work on reducing your stress levels.
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