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February 8, 2019

Psoriasis: breaking the cycle of stress

Psoriasis is a ‘stress-related’ disease. It is triggered by stress and it causes major stress. This means that it creates a vicious cycle which causes terrible angst among most Psoriasis sufferers, young and old.

New research shows that up to 9 out of 10 psoriasis sufferers report that stress triggered their symptoms.

Whilst we cannot avoid or control stressful situations in life, we can control how we react to those situations and we can learn techniques to help manage stress and reduce – and, in some cases, eliminate – the physiological effects of stress. For example, several controlled studies have demonstrated that relaxation, hypnosis, biofeedback, and behavioral and cognitive stress management therapies have been effective in people with psoriasis.

These techniques take time to master but they are well worth the effort. In the meantime, there are two things all psoriasis sufferers can do:

  • Use a topical application to reduce the symptoms of Psoriasis. Topical steroids can work in the short-term but they come with a plethora of side-effects which include thinning of the skin. Many people who use corticosteroids tend to end up relying on them because the best a corticosteroid can do is alleviate symptoms. For this reason, many people prefer to use a more natural treatment that works by supporting body chemistry through anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-proliferative alkaloids such as the herbal extract, Mahonia aquifolium.
  • Try using natural calmatives mood relaxants to alleviate the impact of stress. Essential oil of Lavender has been found to  alleviate stress from fear as well as reducing pain.  And, inhaling Citrus aurantium or Citrus sinensis has also been shown to reduce anxiety in people. Using these can be as simple as having an inhaler or vapouriser dispersing the aroma at home.

However one of the most exciting developments in stress management today is the advent of CBD (otherwise known as Cannabidiol). In December last year, researchers confirmed that CBD can significantly reduce pain, stress AND inflammation which is why it is now being used as the supplement of choice for all stress-related conditions. Just a few drops of 15% CBD oil was found to be effective for most users. The benefits of CBD was confirmed by The National Cancer Institute (NCI) which now recognizes it as an effective treatment for providing relief in a number of symptoms associated with cancer, including pain, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting, and anxiety.

One thing is certain, for anyone who has Psoriasis or has had Psoriasis in the past, managing stress in life is one of the most important things we can learn to both prevent outbreaks, overcome symptoms and maintain clear, healthy skin.

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