STRESS: the impact on your skin health

Skin and Stress connection

Skin, being the largest organ of the human body, is sensitive to the effects of psycho-physical stress, just like other parts of our body.
Experts have long studied how the brain and skin are interconnected, and it has been demonstrated that stress can act on the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and induce the release of pro-inflammatory mediators from the peripheral nervous system to the skin cells.
Although stress is not directly the cause of skin diseases, it can aggravate symptoms or cause the exacerbation of chronic conditions.
Below are some of the main dermatological pathologies with skin manifestations that can be worsened by stress:
– Psoriasis
– Atopic dermatitis
– Seborrheic dermatitis
– Rosacea
– Acne

Acne and stress

Acne is an inflammatory disorder of the pilosebaceous follicles of the face and trunk and can occur in adolescence or later in adulthood. It is induced by various causes (hormonal, inflammatory, and local microbial), including stress. Under stress, the body tends to produce certain hormones that stimulate the sebaceous glands and hair follicles, leading to an increased inflammatory state of the skin.

Seborrheic Dermatitis and Stress

Seborrheic Dermatitis is a skin rash characterized by scaling or crusts causing redness and itching. Seborrheic skin (a type of skin where the secretion of sebaceous glands is above normal) is very sensitive to states of physical and psychological stress, which can trigger or maintain seborrheic dermatitis.

Psoriasis e stress

Psoriasis is a very complex skin disease with unpredictable behaviors. It can occur in various parts of the body at any age.
It can occur in various parts of the body at any age. It is a disorder of epidermal growth, resulting in thickened, often inflamed, and itchy skin plaques. Stress is one of the factors that can influence its course.

Rosacea e stress

Rosacea, also known as Couperose, is a cosmetic disorder characterized by redness and dilation of blood vessels in the cheek area. The skin is generally dry, thin, sensitive, and easily irritated. Those suffering from Rosacea may experience sudden redness in response to hot/cold changes, emotional moments, or stress.

Atopic Dermatitis and Stress

Atopic Dermatitis is a chronic recurrent inflammatory skin disease. Itching is the main symptom, with skin lesions ranging from mild erythema to erythroderma. Atopic dermatitis can affect individuals of any age, from children to adults. The cause is a strong genetic predisposition due to family history. Multiple factors can contribute to its onset, including stress. In cases of stress, itching can worsen, triggering a vicious cycle that leads to scratching and aggravating the disease itself.

Stress, mind and skin

The connection between the brain and skin health is a field of study that continues to reveal the profound impact of stress on our skin well-being. From conditions like psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, seborrheic dermatitis, rosacea, to acne, it is evident that psychological stress can exacerbate or even trigger these conditions, worsening symptoms and negatively affecting the quality of life.

Faced with this evidence, our responsibility towards our body, especially in managing stress, becomes clear. It is crucial to recognize that effective stress management not only improves our overall mental and physical well-being but also reduces inflammation, significantly contributing to the health of our skin. This encourages us to explore and adopt stress-reduction techniques, such as meditation, physical exercise, proper nutrition, and, when necessary, psychological support.

In an increasingly hectic and stressful world, it is essential to find the time and resources for self-care: skin health is not just a matter of external treatments, but also of internal balance and stress management.