Can You Develop Psoriasis from Stress?

Currently, the exact cause of how psoriasis can develop is not fully known yet. There are some speculations from the role of genetic trait to lifestyle factors and even external factors. Stress is one of common triggers for the flare-up of many skin conditions. Many people with psoriasis find that stress can trigger the flare-up.

How can you develop psoriasis?

Experts believe that there is about at least ten percent of general population who inherit one /more genes that create a predisposition to this chronic skin condition. However, there may be only about 2-3 percent of them eventually develop the disease

This finding suggests that genetic trait may not work alone. For this reason, many experts believe that an individual who have psoriasis must be exposed to other factors (external factors called triggers) and have a combination of certain genes.

Another issue associated with psoriasis is about immune system problem. More specifically, a cell called T-cell or T lymphocyte cell (a white blood cell). Like other white blood cells, T-cell is naturally purposed to help fight against foreign substances that can harm the skin.

But in people with psoriasis, without known reason these T cells attack the wrong targets such as health skin cells.

The effects of overactive T cells may trigger the other responses of the immune system. These changes may result some consequences in the mechanism of the skin cell’s life cycle.

In psoriasis, the production of new skin cells increases significantly and moves faster to the outermost layer of the skin.

Normally, the replacement of old skin cells by new skin cells can take about several weeks – but if you have psoriasis, this mechanism can go faster in days rather than weeks, resulting scaly patches on the outermost layer of the skin.

The link between psoriasis and stress

Having a family history of the same problem can be a significant risk factor of the disease. However again, experts believe that genetic trait is not the single answer.

As mentioned before, not all people with family history of psoriasis develop the same problem. This is thought to be because not all of them have the ‘ideal’ mix of genetics and get the triggers that lead to the development of the disease.

In general, the disease may be caused by a combination of different causes – not only about genes! And stress may be one of them!

Many sufferers find that stress can worsen the problem or trigger the flare-up of the disease to recur. Even in some cases, it can cause psoriasis to flare for the first time.

This skin problem is a life-long condition, but it can be controlled in many cases. Many times, it may go away for a long time, but then there is a chance for the problem to return – that’s why medically it is categorized into chronic health condition.

image_illustration143The good news, the flare-up of the problem should be able to be prevented from recurring with appropriate treatment & lifestyle approaches. It is also not contagious condition! However, if it is not controlled well, there are some serious complications that may occur.

Stress is not the single answer for the flare-up. There are other triggers that you should concern if you have psoriasis. And these triggers may also vary from sufferer to sufferer. The following are other common triggers: