Artist News

Selena Gomez taking time off to “focus on health and happiness”

By | Published on Wednesday 31 August 2016

Selena Gomez

Selena Gomez has announced that she is taking a break from public life, after revealing that she has been coping with anxiety, panic attacks and depression as a side effect of contracting autoimmune condition lupus last year.

In a statement to People magazine, Gomez says: “As many of you know, around a year ago I revealed that I have lupus, an illness that can affect people in different ways. I’ve discovered that anxiety, panic attacks and depression can be side effects of lupus, which can present their own challenges”.

She continues: “I want to be proactive and focus on maintaining my health and happiness and have decided that the best way forward is to take some time off. Thank you to all my fans for your support. You know how special you are to me, but I need to face this head on to ensure I am doing everything possible to be my best. I know I am not alone by sharing this, I hope others will be encouraged to address their own issues”.

The singer first spoke about her treatment for the condition last year, speaking about her anger that time out of the spotlight led to speculation that she had developed a drug addiction. She told Billboard: “I wanted so badly to say, ‘You guys have no idea. I’m in chemotherapy. You’re assholes’. I locked myself away until I was confident and comfortable again”.

The cause of lupus is not yet fully understood, but affects the immune system in various different ways as healthy cells, tissue and organs are inflamed. Most common symptoms are fatigue, rashes and joint pain. There are various treatments available, though no known cure.

Mind has more information on depression, anxiety and panic attacks. If you need to speak to someone, you can contact The Samaritans or music industry specific helpline Music Support.