How Acne Affects Emotions and Self Esteem

What causes Acne

How Acne Affects Emotions and Self Esteem

For some reason, the effect of acne on a person’s emotions and self esteem is often left unaddressed. When you go to your dermatologist, for example, he or she will rarely ask you if you feel depressed, anxious, or even hateful of yourself. The dermatologist deals with the surface of a person – his or her skin – by trade. But some acne sufferers – especially teens – may have some very intense emotions under their skin’s surface.

While acne can present a struggle at any age, teens tend to be the most vulnerable to the negative emotional impact of acne. Teenagers are still forming and growing, and the image they form of themselves can be influenced permanently. Adults suffering from acne may still experience some difficult emotions, but they usually have a more mature self-image and a different perspective on the world than teenagers.

It is worth noting, however, that adults – especially women – may suffer emotionally if their acne occurs during menopause or other significant hormonal shifts associated with ageing. The woman may feel unattractive anyway, and the acne may only make it worse.

When a teen has acne, several things can happen that affect his or her self-esteem, such as:

* Being made fun of at school. Whether it’s friendly teasing or mean taunting, having your peers make fun of your face can incite all kinds of negative emotions.

* Being misunderstood, either deliberately or genuinely. A lot of times, people without acne will accuse you of not washing your face, or assume you have poor hygiene. But any teen with acne can tell you, it’s not an issue of not washing! Acne comes from within, and is the result of a complex interplay between hormones, environment, stress level, and nutrients.

* Being ignored or snubbed by the opposite sex. This may not seem like a big deal to a grown-up, but teens with acne often feel ugly or unworthy of attention from the opposite sex.

* Teens with acne may sit at home rather than going out with friends, embarrassed that someone will see their pimples. Acne can make them feel like a social outcast.

Emotionally, a teen may become depressed and angry, even to the point of self-hatred, when he or she experiences this kind of attack on his or her self-esteem. In fact, studies have shown that even when acne is improved, the negative feelings and depression can linger on. This indicates that acne may have a lasting effect on the emotions and self-image.

The sense of injustice that a teen may feel when suffering acne (“Why can’t I be like so-and-so? Why me?”) can manifest as angry and aggressive outbursts.

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Simple Solutions To Get Rid Of Acne

Get rid of Acne

Simple Solutions To Get Rid Of Acne

Acne plagues millions. And when you suffer from acne and breakouts it can have a negative effect on your confidence. The good news is to get rid of acne, there are simple solutions that really work.

#1 Cut back on sugar. There are both good and bad bacteria that live in our bodies. And some bacteria, the kind that can cause acne, thrive on sugar. Additionally, sugar affects your hormone levels and blood sugar levels both of which can cause a strain on your body. This strain makes it difficult for your body to fight any kind of infection, even a small pimple.

Cutting back on sugar helps balance your body’s systems and it eliminates the food bacteria thrive on. If your diet is particularly high in sugar and starchy carbohydrates (think white bread and baked goods) then going on a sugar elimination diet will show dramatic improvements in your skin.

There’s a reason chocolate is so often linked to acne, because it’s high in sugar. It’s also high in dairy and if you have a dairy sensitivity, which many people do, it can cause acne. Additionally, dairy is often full of hormones added to the cows to help them produce more milk. These hormones can wreak havoc on your system. Common foods that can cause acne include sugary foods, dairy, alcoholic beverages, fried foods, meat treated with hormones, and common allergy causing foods like nuts.

#2 Exfoliate and moisturize. Exfoliation of your skin keeps the pores from being clogged. Clogged pores are the precursor to a blemish. However, beware of harsh abrasives. Many facial scrubs are just too abrasive for sensitive skin. Instead, use products with alpha hydroxy acids, retinols and salicylic acids to remove dead skin and debris from your face gently and consistently.

A common protocol might be to use a cleanser with salicylic acid and a night cream with retinol or alpha hydroxy acids or AHAs. Some skin care protocols for teens with acne contain benzoyl peroxide which can work quite well if you have particularly oily skin. However, for adults and those prone to dry skin, it can worsen the acne problem.

#3 Watch what you put on your face and when. Makeup can clog pores. If you wear makeup choose a non-comedogenic versions. Don’t wear makeup when you exercise or when you’re going to be outside in the sun for extended periods of time.

#4 Avoid too much stress. Easier said than done, right? Stress has an effect on our hormones and can cause breakouts. If you’re going to be dealing with stress, say you have a big project coming up, up the vitamin B complex and get some sunshine or vitamin D. Vitamin B helps your body manage stress and it helps protect your skin. Vitamin D, which our body makes when we get about 20 minutes of sunlight each day, helps promote healthy skin.

#5 Try not to touch your skin. This goes beyond not squeezing or picking at your acne. Our fingers are full of bacteria. If you’re prone to acne much of it may be from simply transferring the bacteria on your hands to your face.

Overall, take good care of yourself. Get plenty of sleep, exercise, fresh air and a good healthy diet. Good overall health helps your skin stay healthy and acne free. It helps your body manage obstacles, like stress and hormones, without suffering a breakout.

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