Did you know stress can damage your skin and overall wellbeing?

Did you know stress can damage your skin and overall wellbeing?

Yes, stress is common rampant nowadays. According to a survey by The American Institute of Stress, about 33 percent of people suffer from stress. Having stress at any stage of life is not a big issue, but not treating stress is not recommended at all. Should you not treat stress, it can cause other health issues such as depression, memory loss, and skin issues too. Yep, stress can affect your overall wellbeing including your skin. I know you might be wondering how stress can cause skin problems. Different researchers proved that prolonged stress or mental breakdown can cause skin issues such as acne, rashes, hives, dehydration, eczema, prognosis, rosacea, etc.

How does stress cause skin infections?

According to numerous researches, stress can cause different skin problems because Stress produces the hormone cortisol, which causes the overproduction of sebum. This leads to acne breakouts. Additionally, Stress makes your skin more sensitive and reactive. It triggers rashes, hives, and redness.

A Report by DR. Ghada A. Bin Saif and fellow dermatologist, showed that Stress worsens inflammatory skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis.

1. Hives

The skin infection in which red-colored raised itchy welts form on the skin are called hives. In a study report of American family physicians, about 20 percent of the world population will experience hives once in their lives. According to a report of The American Academy of dermatology, the major reason for hives is an allergic reaction to something, especially foods, medications, insect bites, or pollen. Stress and exercise can also trigger them.

Normally hives last but 24 hours. The most effective therapeutic drugs for this are oral antihistamine and topical steroids creams. Consult your primary care provider.

2. Dehydration

When you are going through depression or stress, you stop taking care of yourself. Due to stress, you can't sleep well. You stop drinking water and eating healthy. In this way, your body becomes dehydrated, and your skin gets dull.

According to clinical cosmetic and investigational dermatology sleep, hydration, and healthy food are important to have good skin. Moreover, sleeplessness can cause skin aging. Diet also has a great role in your skin health.

3. Rosacea

Do you feel a red flush tending to creep across your whole face or body after drinking a few glasses of wine? Or when you were outside in the heat for some time. That’s rosacea. It is a chronic illness of skin that is triggered by some mental breakdown and emotional stress. As we know, stress can lead to inflammation, and inflammation worsens the rosacea.

People with rosacea should use mineral sunscreen and avoid those products that can irritate your skin. People with rosacea should use medications which are specially formulated for people with sensitive skin. Consult your primary care provider.

4. Eczema

Eczema is mostly seen in babies, but some adults can also have it. Almost 10 percent of American adults have skin-related problems. Eczema people have an overactive immune system. Although some ingredients can irritate your skin, stress also triggers eczema. Eczema is a sign of a thirsty skin which can be solved with proper moisturizing. Your skin barrier will require more focus and attention. You can also try out a DIY eczema treatment. We recommend you see your primary care provider.

5. Psoriasis

In psoriasis, the skin becomes thick, and red patches appear on the skin. Moreover, stress can trigger this condition. According to British research by E W M Verhoeven and other researchers, psoriasis patients who were worried about their diseases have worse symptoms. Those who are stressed every day can have severe psoriasis outbreaks too.

Treatments for psoriasis are steroid creams, rich moisturizer, coal tar, and retinoid cream. Stress can trigger it. Consult your primary care provider.

6. Acne

Acne is the most common but least severe skin condition in which small, usually round-shaped pimples are produced on the skin. There are different kinds of acne. The more you feel stressed, the more your body produces the hormone cortisol. Cortisol induces the hypothalamus to produce "corticotropin-releasing hormone" CRH produces the oil from sebaceous glands. Excessive oil production causes acne.

In 2017 a study was conducted on acne in female medical students aged 22 to 24 years by two dermatologists Shadi Zari and Dana Alrahmani. In the results, the researcher stated that stress or mental breakdown is the cause of acne on skin.

Dae Hun Suh, and other team members studied 1236 people. They found that they have acne due to potential aggravating factors such as stress, lack of sleep, and smoking.

7. Rashes

Red sticky large spots on the skin are called rashes. Stress affects the protein in your skin and decreases its elasticity, this cause’s wrinkles.

Stress weakens the immune system. Weak immune system imbalances the bacteria in your GIT and skin, known as symbiosis. In the skin, it causes rashes.

What if I eliminate stress, will my skin clear up?

Yes, by decreasing stress you help get rid of a lot of skin problems. Stress causes many skin infections such as acne, rashes, hives, eczema, etc. When your stress level increases, the production of unwanted hormones, cortisol, causes skin infection.

There are many way to reduce stress included contacting a psychotherapist or psychologist because a psychotherapist can help get rid of chronic stress. You should find a therapist who understands your needs. If you do not want to go that route, you could

● Get a quality sleep of about 7 to 8 hours a day, and sleep at the right time.

● Eat healthy because healthy food contains healthy nutrients which are good for mental health.

● Going to the spa.

● Taking a day off.

● Hanging out with friends and family.

● Do exercises because exercises help to stress level. Exercises engage the brain of the person toward positive things.

● Read books in your free time.

● Spend time in nature; nature gives eye-soothing feelings and relaxes your mind.

● Get time for yourself, do the things you like to relax your mind. Adopt a skincare routine because it will help you to improve your skin health.


Skin health and stress are related to each other. As you know, stress causes different issues such as depression, anxiety, hypertension, and disturbs your overall wellbeing. It affects the skin too. There are various skin conditions or diseases that are related to stress. That's why everyone should get rid of stress to prevent skin diseases.

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