Could your anxiety be causing your skin issues? Experts have discovered that stress and
anxiety is a major factor in a number of chronic skin conditions including acne, psoriasis,
eczema, rosacea, vitiligo, and alopecia.
The discovery that the mind and skin are far more closely linked than first thought has seen
a new field emerging – psychodermatology. Psychodermatologists have discovered that the
roots of these skin conditions reside in your psyche, and only by addressing these through
behavioural therapy, relaxation therapy, or counselling, could you truly see a long term
reduction or even an end to your skin condition.
Based on research in this area, many experts now believe that the future lies in an
integrated approach; treating the mind and skin together. This development will see
psychologists and dermatologists working together, and at a more local level maybe even
life coaches and beauty therapists collaborating to deliver a solution together which can only
be beneficial to the client.
It’s no longer sufficient to think that a cream, applied externally, can solve the damage that is
being done internally via stress and anxiety.
However, treating the internal issues with coaching or therapy, and supporting this with
external solutions (creams, facials, etc) to attend to the physical symptoms could mean an
end to the cycle of uncomfortable and unsightly symptoms which may also be affecting your
self esteem (creating more anxiety!).
What is anxiety?
Anxiety can be described as having a faulty internal alarm system. Simply put, your mind
overestimates the degree of threat whilst simultaneously underestimating your ability to
Day to day it can feel like you are moving from one worry to another with no break in
between. Sounds stressful? It is!
You may also experience the sensation of having a ‘busy mind’ and struggle to be truly in
the moment; constantly worrying about the past or future.
How do I know if I suffer from anxiety?
Chances are if you’ve read this far and you are nodding your head, that you may suffer from
anxiety. However, anxiety shows itself in a number of other symptoms, which cover physical,
behavioural, emotional and cognitive.
From a physical point of view, you may experience a racing heart, dizziness, nausea,
sweating, and in more extreme cases fainting and breathing difficulties.
During periods of extreme anxiety you may find yourself pacing, crying, becoming generally
agitated, and resorting to OCD type behaviour to achieve some control. You may try to seek
reassurance from loved ones, and despite getting it, you notice you don’t feel any calmer.
Emotionally you may feel overwhelmed with daily life, fearful of the future, and helpless to
know how to solve the problems in your life, or how to address the constant worry.
Being in a state of anxiety can affect your levels of concentration, your ability to recall
information, and you may also be easily distracted.
You may not experience every symptom, but if much of this feels familiar, you are probably
suffering from anxiety.
How to treat anxiety
If you are a self confessed ‘worrier’, you may have just accepted this as part of your life, and
as something that cannot be fixed. However, anxiety can be treated via cognitive
To begin with, you need to discover the source of the anxiety. You may already know what
your triggers are, or there could be something underlying that a coach/therapist can help you
Once the issue/s are uncovered you will work with your coach to explore the triggers and
ways to retrain your mind so that the anxiety reduces significantly, or disappears altogether.
The techniques used will be specific to whatever your issues are.
Once the internal source of anxiety has been uncovered and treated, your body will stop
releasing stress hormones and sending messages to your body that you are in fight/flight
mode which results in external symptoms.
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