How Acne Can Affect Your Mental and Emotional Health

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Acne is commonly associated with pimples, blemishes, lesions, and scars. It can also take a devastating mental and emotional toll on those who suffer from it, especially teenagers. Most common in people from 12 to 25, acne tends to affect people developing socially and emotionally. That means aside from visiting the dermatologist and finding new means of skin care, you might experience issues such as:

  • Depression: The British Journal of Dermatology found an increased risk of depression among acne patients. Symptoms of depression include loss of appetite, lethargy, mood disturbances, feeling worthless, and crying spontaneously. Depression might manifest as social withdrawal, especially among teenagers who stay in their bedroom or avoid peers entirely. They may also miss assignments and get lower grades in school.
  • Low Self Esteem: Embarrassment often causes a person to avoid eye contact. You might notice someone with acne growing their hair long to cover it up. Girls may resort to wearing lots of makeup, which can help worsen the condition.
  • Social Withdrawal: The behavior of an acne sufferer’s peers can cause them to withdraw. In some cases, individuals have difficulties forming new relationships, which is particularly hard because teenagers are learning to form relationships in the first place. Shy, reclusive behavior and fear of rejection can lead to social phobia.

Some acne treatments can cause depression as a side effect. This is rare, and the link has been the subject of controversy, but it’s not disputed that acne does cause psychological disturbances.

There’s also a condition known as dysmorphophobic acne. It affects individuals with minor acne, who believe their problem is much worse than it is. Psychological symptoms, social withdrawal, and other abnormal behaviors may present even if their acne is inactive.

How to Get Rid of Acne

Acne causes stress in many people, and stress, in turn, can worsen a breakout or trigger one. The answer isn’t to avoid social interactions, a date, or an interview for a new job. There are lots of ways to control acne, including over-the-counter creams and lotions or prescription medications a dermatologist can provide.

If psychological symptoms are associated with a mental illness such as depression, antidepressants may be prescribed by the person’s doctor. However, there are other options. Group therapy is one type of treatment for mental illnesses. Counseling may be used to build confidence and self-esteem, while there are psychological treatments to deal with anxiety and negative thinking.

Seek Treatment at Laser Dermatology Institute

Using laser and RF technology, LDI is able to treat acne scars, aging, wrinkles, loose skin, and other problems. Dr. Rispler can treat stubborn cases of acne for people with all types of skin. A multi-step plan can be implemented when needed and includes non-invasive techniques and personalized acne treatments at our three locations. Our offices include LDI of Los Angeles, LDI of Covina, and LDI of Newport Beach. For information on the best acne solutions in Southern California, contact us or schedule an appointment today.

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