We all struggle one way or another, but luckily for most of us, we can pick and choose our battles. Imagine though, waking up every morning to be met by a chronic, life-long condition that you have little to no control over. Psori-warriors, we see you!
1. Skin Flakes
Psoriasis wreaks havoc on the body’s largest organ, and would you believe that the largest organ is your skin?
That’s right, skin makes up about 16 percent of [your] overall body mass.
Often characterized by red patches of dry, flaky skin, psoriasis appears on many parts of the body and is most commonly found on the face, scalp, hands, legs, arms, and feet.
The culprit? A malfunctioning immune system.
Because the immune system isn’t able to properly self-regulate, skin cells reproduce at rapid rates, causing painful buildups to form.
The bad news is, although symptoms may come and go, the gene most likely responsible for psoriasis indicates that you’ll probably experience flare-ups the rest of your life.
The good news is, though, if you’re interested in treatment options, they exist! And you can learn about a few of them here.
And if you’re seeking relief, you can click here to view our collection of products specifically formulated to hydrate and soothe psoriatic skin.
2. Impaired Physical Functioning
We’re here to dispel the notion that mostly all problems surrounding psoriasis tend to be cosmetic.
In a study by Rapp et. al, researchers discovered that psoriasis causes as much disability as other major medical diseases.
In fact, “patients reported [a] reduction in physical functioning and mental functioning comparable to that seen in cancer, arthritis, hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, and depression.”
Though psoriasis largely targets the skin, that’s not to say it doesn’t create or enhance any physical or mental limitations.
3. Chronic Joint Pain
Let’s start by addressing physical impairment.
This arthritis results from inflammation within the body and severely impacts joints.
According to most estimates, this type of arthritis develops in about 5 to 10 percent of those living with psoriasis, though more recent studies suggest that number may be closer to 30.
4. Poor Mental Health
As you can imagine, living with chronic pain opens the doors to a variety of other stressors.
Believe it or not, psoriasis has been linked to an increased risk of developing mental disorders along both the psychotic and neurotic spectrum.
A systematic review on clinical correlation suggests that chronic stress “diminishes [the] hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and up-regulates sympathetic-adrenal-medullary responses, stimulating pro-inflammatory cytokines”.
That’s a fancy way of saying that chronic stress actually decreases the body’s ability to handle it, therefore making it more difficult to maintain homeostasis.
Not only does it decrease the axis, but it also up-regulates other responses that stimulate inflammation.
These pro-inflammatory cytokines, researchers argue, are involved in the exacerbation or progression of psoriasis, and at the very least, have an effect on psoriatic symptoms.
It’s a vicious cycle, and one that’s totally exhausting.
Speaking of exhaustion, we all value sleep. And it’s a good thing we do.
Getting enough sleep helps us lower our risk for serious health problems like diabetes and heart disease, decreases our chances of getting sick, and reduces stress while improving mood.
This may be why about one third of Americans (that’s roughly 34%) report taking a nap given a typical day.
In individuals living with psoriasis, fatigue is a major symptom that disrupts daily life for about 3 in 10 people.
Commonly recognized by researchers and doctors, psoriatic fatigue is said to be impacted by chronic inflammation within the body, though no formal studies have been able to link a correlation or causation between the two.
The symptoms of psoriasis extend far beyond what the eye can see.
And it’s no easy feat to wake up every morning and choose to be happy in a body you have little control over.
But psoriasis warriors continue to wake up every day and push to advocate for a better life - both for themselves and for the world.
We see you, we hear you, and we stand with you!
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