State of Mind

By Agoo Azcuna-Bengzon for Belo Medical Group on May 2, 2021

Your skin can tell a story and these days, in the midst of a pandemic, a sudden change in your skin’s overall health may be a symptom of a deeper, more mentally-driven concern. Here, we take a look at how a holistic approach to caring for both your mental and physical health should always be the ultimate goal. 

A pimple here, a flare up there, and splotchiness all over. In more ways than one, our skin can definitely show signs of not just what’s happening to us physiologically but can also give us a glimpse of what’s going on mentally. Our state of mind, and whether we’re experiencing anxiety, depression or other common mental health disorders can show up on the outside, and our skin is definitely one of the places where we can detect that something is going on, and must be addressed—stat!

Experts in both skin and psychology have found that mental health conditions contribute directly to skin problems. For example, skin conditions like acne or atopic dermatitis are easily triggered or made worse by emotional stress. Interestingly, studies have also found that people with certain skin conditions are significantly more prone to have mental health disorders such as depression.

The best way to tackle both physical and mental issues, especially during this pandemic is to approach these problems in a holistic manner. Here are some steps to start this process, and jumpstart your journey to better health, inside and out:

Be aware that we all go through mental struggles—the degrees of which may vary but know that you’re not alone.

Mental health is very much like physical health—it is something all individuals have to face and work on. But just because it’s common, it certainly doesn’t mean we ought to let these issues remain untreated. The first step to recovery entails realizing that you deserve to feel better, and that there are lots of other individuals just like you that can go on this journey of recovery alongside you.

Don’t be afraid or embarrassed to call out for help

Acknowledging that you do need help is the next crucial step. Talk to a trusted expert certified professional about your symptoms as they can have a look at your family and medical history and identify existing medical conditions such a drop in vitamin D levels or a hormonal deficiency like hyperthyroidism.

Treat yourself with kindness

Meditation or yoga is a great way to re-centre yourself. Looking after your body by eating the right kinds of food (organic is always a good idea), committing to at least 20 minutes of exercise daily, natural skin care and positive mental influences will all help you reach your goal of being healthy both physically and mentally. Investing in daily supplements is also key—vitamins B (Complex), C, D and E as well as Zinc and Calcium will ensure that your body is provided with all the complete nutrients it needs every single day.

Heal your skin

Since we now know how to take better care of our mental health, let’s now move on to the other half of what it takes to be completely healthy: a good skin regimen consisting of effective products that care for our skin 24/7 and particularly in times of stress.

  • If you have acne and feel your skin is oily, the best route is to avoid harsh products which can inflame and strip the skin. Look for products to strengthen, hydrate and are anti-inflammatory. The goal here is to soothe your skin and allow it to heal.
  • Adhere to a skin regimen you can follow every day. Make sure to cover all bases by following the prescribed steps:

Finally, remember to love yourself and love your skin. Make sure to live a well-balanced life, and focus on the positive. There will be many challenges ahead but if you’re armed with the right frame of mind and tools to keep things in check, you can be sure that smoother sailing days will be on the horizon.

Follow Agoo Azcuna-Bengzon on Instagram.

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