Gender, Body Image and Social Support: Biopsychosocial Determinants of Depression Among Patients with Psoriasis
Ewa Wojtyna, Patryk Łakuta, Kamil Marcinkiewicz, Beata Bergler-Czop, Ligia Brzezińska-Wcisło
The aim of this study was to examine the importance of psychosocial factors, such as emotional and instrumental social support, distress, and assumptions about appearance and its salience to one’s self-worth, and to relate these factors to depressive symptoms in patients with psoriasis, according to gender. A group of 219 patients with psoriasis, aged 18–70 years completed the Beck Depression Inventory, the Appearance Schemas Inventory-Revised, the Berlin Social Support Scales, and the Distress Thermometer. Body Surface Area index was used to assess the severity of psoriasis. The main contributors to depression were: female gender, beliefs about appearance and its salience to one’s self-worth, greater psychological distress, and lower levels of emotional social support. Therefore, improving the body image of patients with psoriasis, by reducing its salience in their personal lives, may play a role in the prevention of depression, especially in women.