Psychological interventions may relieve skin conditions

The symptoms of some of the most common skin diseases could be alleviated through psychological interventions, according to the latest medical research.

A study by psychologists at the University of Sheffield and published in the British Journal of ­Dermatology has concluded that, although it is recognised that psychological interventions can help with the emotional impact of many skin diseases, they can improve physical symptoms too.

The analysis of previous studies concluded that psychological interventions did benefit patients.

Skin conditions could be associated with psychological distress and interventions targeting this, such as habit reversal, relaxation, cognitive behavioural therapy and other psychological interventions, have long been developed to manage this.

The meta-analysis of 22 studies involving more than 900 participants concluded that there was evidence of benefit but also a need to develop specific interventions and to evaluate these more rigorously.

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