Can Stress Cause Acne?
If you’re like the majority of people, you have probably experienced an acne breakout at one point in your life or another. Most teenagers and adolescents go through a period of hormone-induced acne, though this typically resolves on its own. However, some men and women continue to struggle with chronic or recurrent acne flare-ups well into adulthood. This can, understandably, be frustrating, discouraging, and even embarrassing. While there are many contributing factors to the development of acne, you may be surprised to learn that stress and anxiety can not only trigger breakouts, but actually make existing acne even worse.
The knowledgeable and caring team at Advanced Dermatology understands the sensitive and difficult nature of adult acne and is committed to helping Houston, TX patients understand the potential cause(s) of their breakouts and provide appropriate, effective, long-lasting treatment options for a smoother, clearer complexion.
What causes acne?
In the most basic sense, acne is caused by a blockage of pores. The natural oils in our skin come to the surface and are released through the pores. However, when these pores become blocked, which can happen for a variety of reasons, the oil remains trapped under the surface and can begin to harbor bacteria. This can lead to infections, pimples, cysts, and other forms of acne. While blocked pores are the technical cause of acne, it is important to understand what underlying processes or conditions may be causing the pores to become blocked. Some of the most common factors that trigger, irritate, or exacerbate adult acne breakouts include:
- Hormonal imbalance
- Stress and anxiety
Does stress really cause acne?
The relationship between acne and stress is often debated, but there is certainly evidence showing that increased stress levels can lead to hormonal fluctuations and imbalances, which often prompt excess oil production and other processes. This can trigger acne flare-ups and cause existing breakouts to become worse. Furthermore, patients who are under immense stress are more likely to “fall off the wagon” when it comes to maintaining their skin care routine, eating a healthy diet, staying hydrated, and getting enough sleep, often leading to a flare-up.
How can I get rid of stress acne?
Regardless of the cause of your acne, one of the most important things you can do to keep your skin clear and healthy is to cleanse the area twice a day and use medications and topical ointments as recommended by your dermatologist. In more severe cases, antibiotics may be prescribed, while milder forms of acne may respond to solutions or creams containing salicylic acid, retinoids, and other agents. The team of medical and skin care experts at all of the Advanced Dermatology locations, including Sugar Land, Katy, Pearland, and League City, TX can advise you on the most appropriate skin care regimen for your specific skin type, concerns, and goals.
If you are struggling with stress-induced acne, there are also lifestyle changes that may help lessen the severity or frequency of your breakouts when combined with a regular skin care regimen. These include:
- Eliminate the cause of stress
- Practice meditation or calming activities
- Get plenty of sleep
- Eat a healthy diet
- Stay hydrated
Treating adult acne in Houston, TX
There is no doubt that consistent skin care and at-home regimens can improve some acne symptoms, but, oftentimes, it is necessary to seek professional help for the treatment of more severe or chronic adult acne. If you are ready to finally regain control of your life and feel more comfortable in your own skin, call one of the convenient Advanced Dermatology locations in Katy, Sugar Land, Pearland, or League City, TX to schedule your consultation, and say goodbye to stress acne today!