Lupus (SLE) patients suffer from mood disorders, anxiety and depression. Although lupus is categorized by many physical symptoms, it has been known to affect ones mental health as well. Lupus is a complicated illness. The disease is caused by an overactive immune system. However, with medication, symptoms can be managed. But one must not forget about the side effects the medications might bring. These effects often contribute to other health consequences such as those related to mental health.
Lupus can have direct effects on mental health including cognitive dysfunction, depression and anxiety and even personality changes. Patients with lupus may become forgetful, “fuzzy-headed,” or the more familiar term for us lupies, “brain fog.” Other patients with lupus appear more angry, irritable and even experience depression and anxiety.
Mood disorders common in SLE patients
The relationship between mood disorders and lupus is common. Studies have shown that mood disorders are the second most frequent event experienced by lupus patients.
Research has found a relationship between patients with SLE and anxiety and depression. One particular finding came from Denmark where researchers found that not only do lupus patients suffer from anxiety and depression, but it also lowers their quality of life as well.
- Learn and begin to accept your diagnosis
- Take your diagnosis one day at a time
- Break down tasks into small and tangible projects you can achieve
- Talk positive to yourself and avoid negative thoughts or speech
- Manage stress which can have a negative toll on your mental health
- Know your physical limits
- Educate yourself about lupus so you can know what to expect
- Educate others so they’ll better understand the disease and how it affects you
*Lupies, remember that you have the disease, it does not have you. Read more about lupus and how it is interwoven with a ton of other mental health illnesses.