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How Does Stress Affect Acne?

Learn how stress affects acne from dermatologist Cybele Fishman, MD in this Howcast skin care video.


Patients always say to me, "I definitely break out more when I'm stressed out." And there's a reason for that.

When you're stressed out, and that can be because you're stressed out on your job. It also could be stress because you're not getting enough sleep or you're traveling a lot.

But anytime you're worn down your body's going to produce more cortisol. That's a stress hormone. What cortisol does is it makes your sebaceous gland, which is commonly known as the oil gland become more active and make more oil or sebum. Thus leading to the clogged pore which leads to all the other things you don't want to see on your face, like pimples and cysts.

So, I think a very important of treating acne and maybe the most difficult part is trying to reduce your stress.

Because I try to practice intergratively I often give suggestions to my patients on lifestyle modifications that I think would help their skin.

I'm a big fan of yoga. I do it personally and I recommend it for many of my patients. Because I think it just brings your body back into balance.

And when you do that you have fewer stress hormones going all over the place causing inflammation in your body and your skin.

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