Let’s Explore the Mental Health & Skin Connection



Let’s Explore the Mental Health & Skin Connection

Psychodermatology is a relatively new field that has gained popularity in recent years as more and more people are becoming aware of the connection between a person's emotional well-being and their skin health. The skin is the largest organ of the body, and it is a mirror of our internal state. When we experience stress, anxiety or depression, our skin can become sensitive, inflamed and itchy. When we are happy, relaxed and calm, our skin can be clear and healthy.

Psychodermatology is also focused on the psychological factors that can affect skin health, such as stress, anxiety, depression and low self-esteem. The movement aims to help people build confidence, self-esteem and resilience, which can help them cope with their skin conditions and improve their quality of life.

Why is Psychodermatology Important?

There are several skin conditions that are closely linked to psychological factors, such as psoriasis, eczema, acne and rosacea. Studies have shown that stress and anxiety can trigger or worsen these conditions.

Psychodermatology aims to help people manage these conditions by addressing their emotional well-being and providing psychological support.

If You're Struggling With....

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Three Wellness Tips for Skin & Mental Well-Being

  • Research has demonstrated that practicing mindfulness and meditation can effectively decrease oxidative stress1, a major contributor to skin aging, and also promote skin restoration while reducing Trans-Epidermal Water Loss (TEWL)2. This leads to a strengthened skin barrier that is better moisturized.
  • To enhance these benefits, consider consulting with a dermatologist who specializes in psychodermatology or has expertise in addressing the psychological aspects of skin conditions. They may recommend complementary therapies such as acupuncture, psychotherapy, or hypnosis alongside conventional medical treatments.
  • Another simple yet effective way to achieve healthy, glowing skin is by getting adequate sleep, preferably 7-9 hours per night. Not only does this promote better skin health, but it also improves mood and reduces the risk of developing depression3.

Still Struggling?

Psychodermatology treatments can also include psychotherapy, relaxation techniques, stress-management techniques, mindfulness and cognitive-behavioral therapy. To find a therapist, check out Open Path Collective & Therapy For Black Girls.

1.Epel E, Daubenmier J, Moskowitz JT, Folkman S, Blackburn E. Can meditation slow rate of cellular aging? Cognitive stress, mindfulness, and telomeres. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2009 Aug;1172:34-53. doi: 10.1111/j.1749-6632.2009.04414.x. PMID: 19735238; PMCID: PMC3057175.

2.Meesters, A., den Bosch-Meevissen, Y.M.C.I., Weijzen, C.A.H. et al. The effect of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction on wound healing: a preliminary study. J Behav Med 41, 385-397 (2018).

3.NIH News in Health: The Benefits of Slumber