Lupus and Mental Health Concerns


Learning stress-management techniques. Living with a chronic disease is stressful. A mental health professional can teach you techniques, such as progressive muscle relaxation, guided imagery, and meditation, that you can use regularly to cope with the stress of lupus. Other stress relievers you can try include listening to soothing music, taking a warm bath or a walk, or doing some gentle exercises.

Doing activities you enjoy. Lupus may limit some activities. So it’s important to find things you enjoy doing and take time to do them. These activities can be as simple as reading a good book or doing thoughtful things for others.

Seeking support. When you are feeling down, talk with a trusted friend, clergy member, or counselor. Consider joining a support group. To find a group for lupus patients near you, speak with your doctor or counselor or check with the Arthritis Foundation or Lupus Foundation of America.

Appreciating yourself. Although you have lupus, you likely have many other things, such as pretty eyes, a friendly smile, musical talent, or a flare for Cajun cooking. Don’t make lupus the focus of your life. Focus on your talents, abilities, and strengths.

WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by David Zelman, MD on August 23, 2015



Hospital for Special Surgery: “The Effects of Lupus and Lupus Medications on Mood” and “Lupus and Depression.”

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases: “Lupus: A Patient Care Guide for Nurses and Other Health Professionals 3rd Edition: Chapter 4: Care of the Lupus Patient.”

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases: “Handout on Health: Systemic Lupus Erythematosus.” 

Office of Health and Human Services: “The Ups and Downs: Coping with Lupus.”

Muscal E. Neurol Clin, Feb. 1, 2010.

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