5 Health Conditions Linked to Psoriasis
Anyone living with psoriasis should be aware of the health conditions linked to psoriasis. While many who have this skin disorder live long, healthy lives, it is important to know about the heightened risk of certain illnesses.
Psoriasis comes with a fairly sizable list of potential comorbidities. A comorbidity is an additional chronic disease that exists alongside a condition you already have.
Psoriasis is so prone to comorbidities largely because it is a condition caused by inflammation. The inflammation that causes psoriasis flare-ups and skin plaques can cause additional issues throughout your entire body.
The best way to avoid health conditions linked to psoriasis is to stay on top of your psoriasis treatment strategy. Talk to your doctor about the best course of action for combating inflammation.
Also take the time to educate yourself. Learn about the most common health conditions linked to psoriasis and how to recognize the warning signs.
Here are five comorbidities that occur in many psoriasis patients.
#1: Psoriatic Arthritis
Psoriatic arthritis is the most common of the health conditions linked to psoriasis. An estimated 30-33 percent of people living with psoriasis also struggle with psoriatic arthritis. Moreover, the number of patients who have undiagnosed psoriatic arthritis may be as high as 15.5 percent.
The symptoms of psoriatic arthritis include swelling, stiffness, and pain in the joints. This condition is most likely to develop with severe psoriasis. However, you should see your doctor at the first sign of arthritis, no matter how severe your skin condition is.
If left untreated for too long, psoriatic arthritis can cause serious joint damage or disability. With early detection, you will likely be able to control your symptoms and limit damage.
#2: Heart Disease
Psoriasis comes with an increased risk of heart disease. The same inflammation that triggers psoriatic skin can also damage your blood vessels. This leads to a range of potential conditions under the umbrella of cardiovascular diseases, including:
- Heart failure
- Heart attack
Heart valve problems
The most effective way to reduce your risk of heart disease is through healthy eating, regular exercise, and a non-smoking lifestyle. Fortunately, these are also natural ways to guard against psoriasis flares.
#3: Anxiety and Depression
Psoriasis and depression have a tendency to go hand-in-hand. While individuals who have psoriasis are more likely to develop depression and anxiety, the opposite is also true. Studies suggest that those who struggle with depression are more likely to develop psoriasis.
Either way, the connection is undeniable. Depression and anxiety are among the most common health conditions linked to psoriasis.
Scientists believe this heightened risk of mental illness does have physical causes . . . at least partially. They think this depression is often caused by inflammation.
However, we also know that psoriasis patients may struggle with depression and anxiety simply because of their lifestyle challenges. Psoriatic skin can cause stigma, low self-esteem, constant pain, poor sleep patterns, and social isolation.
As with many health conditions linked to psoriasis, minimizing the risk of depression begins with finding the best treatment for psoriasis
#4: Metabolic Syndrome
Psoriasis increases your likelihood of developing metabolic syndrome by almost 6 percent.
Metabolic syndrome is actually a group of health conditions that all occur simultaneously. This group includes high blood pressure, high blood sugar, abnormal cholesterol levels, and increased body fat.
If you develop metabolic syndrome, you are at increased risk for other health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and stroke.
Just as with heart disease, a healthy lifestyle is the best way to minimize your risk of metabolic syndrome. Keep an eye out for the warning signs by having your doctor monitor your cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar levels.
#5: Type 2 Diabetes
Inflammation can interfere with your cells’ ability to absorb sugar. As a result, your blood sugar levels spike, putting you at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
This condition can further heighten your risk of developing other health conditions linked to psoriasis. Cardiovascular disease is of particular concern. Type 2 diabetes can also lead to vision loss and kidney disease.
To guard against diabetes, stay physically active, consume high-fiber foods, and if you are overweight, work towards losing weight safely. Also ask your doctor to track your blood sugar levels.
How Can I Avoid Health Conditions Linked to Psoriasis?
There is no guaranteed way to avoid health conditions linked to psoriasis. However, you can take measures to reduce your risk and prepare to recognize early signs of a comorbidity.
Living a healthy lifestyle is key. Exercise regularly and enjoy a psoriasis-friendly diet. Do whatever you can to minimize stress and get plenty of sleep. Try to maintain a healthy weight.
Talk to your doctor about any symptoms you should look out for. Together, determine how closely you should monitor your blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and cholesterol.
Discuss psoriasis treatments with your doctor. A great natural option for soothing psoriatic skin is Delfina Skin Dry Skin Oil. This is a deep-penetrating solution that hydrates and nourishes the deeper layers of skin. You can learn more about it here.
Above all, prioritize wellness. Listen to your body. You deserve your own best care.