A new medical study shows that eczema can cause havoc on those who suffer from this skin disorder, and can cause psychological stress that may contribute to mental disorders in some situations. The Northwestern University researchers determined that eczema suffers tend to drink, smoke, and be obese than those without this irritatingly itchy skin condition, and they also tend to exercise less frequently. Because of these poor habits individuals with eczema also usually have higher risks for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. In addition people with eczema often have bouts of insomnia. Approximately 1 in 10 Americans have eczema and this disorder can have a big emotional toll because it is chronic and can be highly disruptive to a healthy lifestyle.
The medical study shows that those with eczema suffer from high levels of emotional stress, and the more severe the condition is the more psychological stress there may be. This can contribute to mental disorders. According to Jonathan Silverberg, Ph.D. The lead author of the study and a dermatologist, “This disease takes a huge emotional toll on its sufferers, like chronic pain. “Because eczema often starts in early childhood, people are affected all through their developmental years and adolescence. It hurts their self-esteem and identity. That’s part of why we see all these negative behaviors.” Dr. Silverberg explained further that “They will avoid anything that triggers the itch. Patients report their eczema flares during a workout. This opens our eyes in the world of dermatology that we’re not just treating chronic inflammation of the skin but the behavioral, lifestyle side of things.”