Stress can affect your whole body, including your hair, nails, and skin. Since stress is a part of life, what matters is how you handle it.
I was inspired to write this article following reading one in my monthly Aesthetics journal
How Stress Affects Skin
Stress causes a chemical response in your body that makes skin more sensitive and reactive. It can also make it harder for skin problems to heal.
Have you ever noticed that you break out more when you’re stressed? This is because stress causes your body to make hormones like cortisol, which tells glands in your skin to make more oil. Oily skin is more prone to acne and other skin problems.
Stress can also:
Make skin problems worse. For example, stress can aggravate Acne, psoriasis, rosacea, and eczema. It can also cause hives and other types of skin rashes.
Interfere with daily skin care. If you’re stressed, you might skimp on this part of your routine, which can aggravate skin issues.
It can also be stressful to have problems with your skin. Some people feel so bad about how it looks that they keep to themselves, which adds more stress.
If you have an issue that doesn’t heal or keeps coming back, rethink how you handle stress.
8 Ways to Ease the Effects of Stress on Your Skin
You probably can’t avoid stress completely, but you can try ways to handle it better. Try these approaches:
- Don’t neglect your skin. Take care of it, even if you’re tired or stressed.
- Get regular exercise. It’s good for your skin and the rest of your body.
- Take time for yourself to do something you enjoy, even if you only have 10 minutes. Take a bath or read a book.
- Take a walk around the block.
- Practice stress management techniques, such as breathing exercises, yoga, meditation, or visual imagery.
- Get enough sleep. Seven to 8 hours each night is ideal.
- Say no. It’s OK to set limits and boundaries to lower your stress.
- Talk to someone. Contact me for advice.
Meditation for Inner Peace, Happiness and Calm
Although this meditation is designed to be practised in bed as you wake up to help you set your intention for the day, you can practice it anytime during the day when you feel pushed, strained, or pulled in too many directions.
It is easy to do, and within two minutes you instantly feel refreshed and re-balanced.
- Lying on your back on your bed, make sure you feel comfortable and your back is supported.
- If you suffer from lower back pain, this can be eased by having your legs resting straight out along the bed and placing a firm pillow underneath your knees, or you can rest the soles of your feet on your bed, knees up.
- Place your right hand on your upper chest and your left hand on your lower abdomen.
- Spend a few moments listening to all the sounds you can hear in the room.
- If it is raining or windy, turn your attention to the sounds the elements make when they touch other surfaces.
- Gradually, turn your attention to your hands (still resting on your chest and belly) and take a slow steady breath in through your nose for a count of one-two-three-four.
- Then slowly exhale through your nose one-two-three-four.
Repeat this five to seven times.
- In your mind’s eye, start to imagine you are standing in front of an open doorway looking out onto a stunning landscape.
- With each breath, keep “looking” at the view, feel the splendour and majestic beauty of the landscape filling you up.
- With each breath say to yourself “I am peace” as you hold the scene before you in your mind’s eye.
- Repeat the affirmation, “I am peace,” five to seven times,
- and when you are ready, bring your attention back to your hands resting on your chest and belly.
Spend a few more moments listening to the sounds you can hear in and around your room.
- Gradually open your eyes and return your hands back to your side.
Stand up slowly.
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