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Is there a connection between stress and acne?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

Like most skin conditions, acne can be made worse through stress. Unfortunately, the worsening acne can, in turn, lead to more stress, and a cycle that can be very difficult to endure. It is important to know all available treatment options, and to not accept the condition as inevitable.

 

Patricia Farris, MD
Dermatology

There have been several studies showing that stress can cause acne.  A study of teens showed that acne often flares as a result of pre-exam stress. Adults also have been shown to have acne flares related to work and personal stress. Current theories point to a brain hormone called corticotropin releasing hormone (CRH).  Stress triggers the release of CRH which  turns on sebaceous gland function and differentiation resulting in acne. This brain-acne connection explains why so many patients complain of stress related break outs. I suggest yoga or meditation to my patients. These are excellent ways to relieve stress without medication.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.