Stress And Skin
Stress is the body’s method of reacting to a challenge that results from adverse or demanding circumstances. Stress typically describes a negative condition or a positive condition that can have an impact on a persons mental and physical wellbeing. It can have many profound effects on the human biological systems including the skin.
Skin is the largest organ of the body and serves as an important environmental interlace providing a protective envelope against toxic insults by a broad spectrum of physical and chemical agents that are capable of altering its structure and function. The problem occurs when the protective barrier of the skin is compromised and damaging irritants enter the skin.
When people are under stress, the levels of the major stress hormone called cortisol and adrenaline increases. As a result, the adrenaline increase breaks down collagen levels and causes inflammation. These stress hormones can cause irritation and loss of the immune function in the skin and the effects of this are very similar to what happens during the natural ageing process.
Skin Complaints Due To Stress
The appearance of spots, whiteheads, and blackheads can be fuelled by stress due to an increased surge of hormones that kick in to help one cope with the stressful tasks at hand.
This is a generic term given to all flaky scalp conditions especially seborrhea characterized by increased sebum secretion and accumulation of dead skin causing itchy white flakes.
Stress and hair loss can be related. If you notice sudden or patchy hair loss or more than usual hair loss when combing or washing your hair it could be as a result of high stress and what doctors call telogen effluvium.
How To Reduce Stress
- Exercise regularly. Physical activity plays a key role in reducing and preventing the effects of stress.
- Stick to a healthy diet.
- Reduce caffeine and sugar.
- Avoid alcohol, cigarettes, and drugs.
- Get sufficient sleep.
- De-stress your skin by changing your skin care routine.
It’s important to see the skin as an integral part of a total system which needs de-stressing on a total body level, if the skin is to benefit from this. Talk to your dermatologist about healthy skin habits and incorporate the same in your routine.