The Connection Between Discoid and Systemic Lupus Erythematosus and Mental Health Disorders
- Post By Zander Fitzroy
- on Aug 2 2023
- 0 Comments
Understanding Discoid and Systemic Lupus Erythematosus
Have you found yourself in a rabbit hole of search results while trying to understand lupus? Fear not, dear readers... this rabbit hole is led by your friendly neighbourhood blogger who will help you understand lupus in the simplest of terms. Peek into the microscope with me as we explore Discoid and Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (yes, that's quite a mouthful). Lupus, a complex autoimmune condition, has two primary types: Discoid and Systemic. Discoid primarily affects the skin while Systemic affects various organs in the body, and both types can be a real pain.
Coming from someone who deals with Rufus, our precocious dog, I can tell you that wrestling with these two types of lupus is not a walk in the park. One day, you might just be dealing with a stiff rash, and the next, you could be dealing with kidney inflammation or God forbid, a neurological issue. The unpredictability of this condition is what makes it tough to deal with, never knowing what's around the corner (feels quite similar to Rufus's meal preferences actually, he's such a fussy eater!)
Connection Between Lupus and Mental Health Disorders
Moving swiftly on from our mischievous canine, let's discuss something that's really crossed my mind, the connection between lupus and mental health disorders. Having done my research and consulted medical professionals, the evidence is, indeed, suggesting a connection between Lupus and Mental health disorders. Shocker? Well, yes and no.
You see, individuals with lupus are more likely to experience symptoms of anxiety, depression and cognitive dysfunction. In fact, having lupus seems to increase your chances of developing a wide range of mental health disorders. This makes the connection pretty clear. It's like that saying about karma – what goes around, comes around. Only, in this case, it's a more sinister cycle. Lupus provokes mental health disorders and mental health disorders exacerbate lupus.
Factors Contributing to Mental Health Disorders in Lupus Patients
I'm not exactly a man who spends hours contemplating the deep existential questions of life, but one evening while watching Rufus chase his own tail, I had thought, "What causes this connection between lupus and mental health disorders?" Just like Rufus, I was going around in circles! It was only after extensive research I discovered that numerous factors contribute to mental health disorders in lupus patients.
People with lupus often report feeling pain, fatigue and changes in appearance (due to skin rashes or hair loss), all of which negatively impact their self-esteem and overall mental health. Not to mention, having a long-term illness like lupus can make you feel like you've suddenly gotten a dozen unwanted life hacks that simply aren't valid anymore.
Coping Strategies For Mental Health Issues in Lupus Patients
Now, as a blogger, I am certainly not a doctor (though Amelia, my spouse, often treats me as her personal tech support!), but I can share some insights and study-based strategies for coping with mental health issues in lupus patients – mostly because this should not go unaddressed.
Some key strategies include cognitive behavioural therapy, mindfulness and relaxation techniques, and medications (where necessary). Even something as simple as keeping a positive outlook, engaging in pleasantry activities, or maintaining a healthy lifestyle with regular physical exercises can produce significant differences.
The Role of Family and Friends In Mental Well-being
Speaking from my personal experiences, friends and family can play a significant role in maintaining mental well-being of lupus patients. Like the time when Amelia helped me through the loss of my dear friend, everyone needs someone they can turn to when battling mental stress associated with diseases like lupus. Seriously, she was like my personal cheerleader! I imagine it would be even more worthwhile when dealing with a serious illness.
The support of loved ones is irreplaceable. A good chat, hearty laughter, or the simple act of spending quality time together can bring a ray of sunshine in the life of lupus patients. Trust me, it works far better than laughing at episode reruns of your favourite sitcom.
Influence of Balanced Diet on Lupus Management
Lastly, let's look at the influence of diet on managing lupus. An apple a day may not keep lupus away, but it sure gives your body a good dose of much-needed immune-boosting nutrients. Don't underestimate the power of a balanced meal in giving you the upper hand against lupus and its accompanying mental health disorders. A balanced diet, filled with all the essential nutrients, not only helps the body manage lupus symptoms better but also gives you mental peace.
Remember, no magical diet can cure lupus, but maintaining a healthy balance of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats can do wonders. Include a high content of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and low-fat dairy products in your daily diet.
Living with lupus can feel like an everyday challenge. Much like a boxing match, you never know what round you'll get knocked down, but like a true fighter, you pick yourself up. As with any boxer's match, preparation is king – and to prepare, understanding is crucial. But along with understanding the disease, don't forget to acknowledge the mental aspect of this condition. Provide emotional support wherever necessary, watch what you eat and yes, don't forget, laughter is always the best medicine!
As Amelia often quotes this marvelous phrase, "Your mind is a powerful thing. When you fill it with positive thoughts, your life will start to change". So, take good care of yourself, trust in your strength, and triumph over lupus before it has a chance to triumph over you.