Stress, something most of us experience right? We are living such fast-paced lives that experiencing stress is considered almost routine. It’s almost at the point that you’d question if you were being told the truth by someone who says they never feel stressed. But it’s not really a badge of honour. Experience stress can be harmful if we don’t have any mechanisms to deal with it. It can have long term effects on our health…but often starts off impacting our skin. 

While it’s not possible to eliminate stress from your life 100%, how you deal with it can make the difference between a dull skin with breakouts, or a skin that stays strong and supple despite the stress you’re experiencing.

How does stress actually affect the skin?

The onset of stress triggers a chemical reaction in our body that starts a “fight or flight” response and produces a stress hormone known as cortisol. Cortisol makes your body more alert, sensitive, and reactive to the environment, no matter how small it is. 

This, in turn, causes your body to be on guard, and pretty much all of the nutrition that you have in your body (at the moment the stress happens) is taken up in this “fight or flight” mode. And that means the skin will suffer during the stress. 

Not only is your skin unable to get the nutrition and oxygen it needs for repair anything wrong with the skin, as well as restoring the nutrients, anything in the skin tissue that becomes injured or inflamed will take longer, and be harder to repair. 

You’ll notice you have acne breakouts while your body is in stress, and it takes so long for the blemishes to clear up despite applying spot treatments, taking acne supplements and drinking plenty of water to detox – the stress within your body affects it all. 

Not just acne, serious skin disorders such as rashes, hives, allergies, rosacea, and psoriasis will get worse when your body is under stress for some time.  It simply can’t allocate enough nutrition, oxygen, and healing mechanisms for the skin while it stays on guard. 

How to deal with stress so it won’t affect my skin?

Since stress is inevitable and part of our life, the key is to handle it in a way that won’t impact your skin. 

When stress is impacting your body and skin, it’s time to boost your self-care. 

Make sure you’re sleeping as well as you can, eat well, cleanse your skin, drink plenty of water.  Practice deep breathing, meditation, aromatherapy, sound baths.

If stress is a result of your workload (both professional and domestic) consider delegation of some tasks and invest the time that you’ve saved into your recuperation and healing. 

These methods are best used as preventative measures, but when stress happens, don’t let your self-care disappear.

Reference

https://www.self.com/story/how-stress-impacts-skin

https://www.shape.com/lifestyle/mind-and-body/how-emotions-affect-skin 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4082169/

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