How Stress Affects your Skin

Have you recently looked in the mirror and noticed a difference in your skin? Does it look dull, lifeless, wrinkly? Or, maybe you have just been diagnosed with having a skin condition such as eczema, rosacea, acne or psoriasis and no matter what medications you use, you just can’t seem to clear your skin up. Whatever the case may be, before making another trip to the Dermatologist, maybe you should consider the fact that this may just be, pesky old stress creeping up on you. One would have to ask “Can stress really have that much of a affect on a person?” And the answer is yes. See this is how it works:

When you are confronted with a stressful situation, for example: rushing to meet a deadline or just dealing with family problems, your body produces the hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Cortisol is referred to as the “stress hormone” because it is involved in response to stress and anxiety. When a person becomes stressed, the level of the body’s stress hormone (cortisol) rises. This in turn causes an increase in oil production, which can lead to oily skin, acne and other related skin problems. Adrenaline, what we call a “fight or flight” hormone, prepares the body for action in emergency situations, boosting the supply of oxygen and energy-giving glucose to the brain and muscles. At the same time, however, adrenaline re-directs blood flow away from the skin, thereby decreasing the skin’s supply of oxygen the skin doesn’t receive the nourishment it needs.

Some other skin problems stress may cause includes; excessive sweating, cold sores, and discoloration when internal regenerative processes break down.

I wish I could tell you there was a cure for stress, but in this fast pace, demanding world, little annoying old stress keeps popping up, causing big problems. So instead I will suggest some things you can do that will help eliminate the affects stress has on your skin.

Researcher say that yoga and meditation helps relieve stress. Also eating healthy foods like fruit, vegetables and whole grain, instead of greasy foods and reducing caffeine intake and lets not forget keeping the skin clean and moisterized.

My favorite remedy that helps me with stress is repeating the serenity prayer “God grant me the the serenity to accept the things I can’t change courage to change the things I can change, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

Even though there is no way to eliminate stressful situation altogether, the important thing is that we are aware of when stress is sneaking up on us and the different affects it can have on our skin.