We all know the damage stress can cause to our health. It can cause serious damage to our bodies and to our minds. But, did you know stress can also directly impact on your skin?
After all, our skin is the largest organ in our bodies. You may already suffer from common skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis or acne and assume they are the result of bad genes alone. But, stress can have a huge impact on skin conditions.
Stress hormones are incredibly important in dermatology, especially when looking at the role of stress in triggering or exacerbating common skin conditions.
Stress hormones such as Corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) or CRH are a crucial part of our central stress response system. When we become emotional or stressed, CRF can be released from sensory nerves and immune cells, which in turn can lead to skin and systemic diseases.
How stress can show on the skin:
Dry, Flaky Skin
If you're stressed, chances are you're not drinking enough water. You might also be drinking more caffeine, which can be dehydrating. If your body is not getting the proper hydration it needs, your skin will very quickly show it.
We know sleep is a big factor in our overall health and well-being. But did you know, not getting enough sleep can show up on your face? Puffy eyes, dark circles, and increased signs of aging are all physical consequences of not getting sufficient sleep. Sleep is a time when our body can regenerate and when cells have an opportunity to repair themselves. The best thing you can do for your skin is to aim for 8 hours of sleep a night and to apply a night masque or moisturiser right before you go to sleep.
We often show our emotions on our faces. If we are stressed, it usually shows. Constantly making certain facial expressions, like furrowing your brows when you're stressed or pursing your lips, can lead to deeper wrinkles in these areas over time.
Rashes and Hives
Did you know that both rashes and hives are caused by a dysbiosis, aka an imbalance in your gut? They crop up when stress takes over and too much bad bacteria outweighs the good. A good probiotic can help promote more good bacteria in your gut which in turn will help your skin, even during a stressful period.