How Does Stress Affect the Skin and the Appearance of Acne?

Acne is the most common dermatological problem, which has been dealt with since ancient times. Mention of acne can be found in the writings of Aristotle and Hippocrates, where they associate the appearance of facial rashes with puberty. But many years of dermatological research makes it clear that acne often has nothing to do with age – you can wake up in the morning and find inflammation on the nose or cheeks at 13 and at 33. Acne can vary depending on a number of factors: diet, environment, bad habits and stress.

Acne as a Consequence of Stress

The connection between acne and stress has been discussed for a long time, but the research and evidence on the subject are relatively recent. Nervous situations respond to many changes in the human body. One is the production of the hormone cortisol, which is responsible for regulating carbohydrate metabolism. Cortisol also has a second name – the stress hormone – from which another of its functions follows: it’s formed in the adrenal glands and is designed to help the body cope with stress, but its overproduction has a negative effect on the skin and leads to acne.

Normally, cortisol levels are related to the human circadian rhythm: in the morning, the hormone reaches its peak level, but close to bedtime, when we are ready for bed, its level goes down. Strong stressful situations, like losing money while gambling at Woo Casino or having job problems, lead to an intensive production of cortisol, and it provokes hyperplasia of the sebaceous glands. They begin to produce more sebum, which leads to clogged pores and the formation of acne. Besides, it’s proved that excessive cortisol reduces the barrier function of the skin, which means that it reacts more strongly not only to the internal causes of rashes, but also to pollution from the environment. Besides, skin regeneration is also significantly related to cortisol levels, according to a study by Ohio University. Researchers concluded that an increase in the stress hormone in the blood slows the healing of wounds and other skin damage. Consequently, scars and post-acne marks will disappear from the skin much slower when stress is elevated.

Stress also leads to changes in the gut flora, which lowers local immunity and also affects the skin. The results of these failures are an exacerbation of acne, and often all over the body at once, not just on the face.

Science of the Skin and Nervous System

Mental health is a delicate matter: in case of constant stress or other inner discomfort, help should be sought from specialists in the first place. The relationship between the nervous system and the skin could not go unnoticed, which is why the science known as psychodermatology has recently been gaining popularity.

The issues that psychodermatology studies are quite diverse and include several ways the skin and mind interact. Psychodermatologists work with patients whose depression may have been exacerbated by psoriasis or eczema, or with those whose psychological problems translate into skin problems-when people deliberately damage themselves. The biggest challenge for psychodermatology is to study and understand exactly how emotional stress affects the skin. Much of the research in this field has led to the knowledge of how the skin responds to an overabundance of cortisol in the blood.

What Experts Say

It’s obvious that in today’s world, chronic stress and inadequate sleep have a lot to do with skin. Stress systematically disturbs the balance of our endocrine system, leading to increased levels of cortisol with subsequent changes in the thyroid, sex and other endocrine glands. This, in turn, can cause an increase in oiliness of the skin and reduce local immunity. That is why new rashes may appear against a background of prolonged negative experiences, or an already faded process may worsen.

The most correct thing to do in this situation is to establish a full healthy sleep, ideally from 10 to 11 pm you should already be asleep, since it is during this period melatonin – a very important hormone that protects us – is actively produced.

Also, do not neglect the help of a psychotherapist and dermatologist-cosmetologist – they will help to cope with this condition with the least possible losses.

The good news is that the negative effects of stress on the skin can be neutralized. First, it’s necessary to level out the manifestations of stress and learn how to relax. Yoga, meditation, work with psychologists and psychotherapists, as well as neurophysiologists will help build therapy to regulate the nervous system.

In parallel with the normalization of the nervous system is carried out therapy directly acne, depending on the severity of the disease. Nowadays, it is very important to use external care products that influence the microbiome of the skin and regulate the sebum.

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