"There are some people for whom stress is clearly a trigger [for psoriasis outbreaks]," says Mark Lebwohl, MD, chairman of the medical board of the National Psoriasis Foundation. In a 2004 survey conducted by Scandinavian researchers, more than two-thirds of the respondents reported that their psoriasis was exacerbated by stress, and 35% said that the onset of the disease had occurred during a time of worry and stress.
Though there is no research definitively showing that lowering stress can improve your psoriasis, many patients swear by the strategy. Lori Leyden, PhD, who has had psoriasis for 30 years and is the author of The Stress Management Handbook: Strategies for Health and Inner Peace, is one of them. "[My psoriasis] has been in control for the last 20 years, every since I started practicing stress management."
Try these techniques to see if reducing stress will reduce your flare-ups. View the slideshow.