A recent British study found that people affected by acne have a higher risk of developing major depression than those with a naturally clear skin. Researchers found acne can boost the risk of depression by 63% or more in the first year since diagnosis.
The study was based on data and self-reports taken from the The Health Improvement Network database. Some of the data dated back to the mid-1980s. The Health Improvement Network is the largest digital database of medical records on the planet.
The study revealed a link between having acne and a 63% higher chance of being diagnosed with severe depression in the first year following acne’s onset. Acne-prone people, however, saw their depression vanish after about 5 years since the initial diagnosis.
This study highlights an important link between skin disease and mental illness,
lead author Dr. Isabelle Vallerand pointed out.
Acne Can Impact Mental Health
Researchers underlined that the health of our skin has a huge impact on our mental health. The hypothesis is confirmed by the fact that people who went to a doctor to help them fix their acne issues had a higher risk of depression than people without acne problems.
- Study authors recommend physicians to track their patients’ mood changes and the risk of depression when they come visit them with an acne problem.
- Doctors could prescribe appropriate treatments and therapies that can improve those patients’ mental state as well.
Vallerand underscored that, for many people, acne represents more than a skin blemish. It dramatically affects their self-esteem and body image. The mental health concerns should be taken seriously, researcher warned.
The good news is that acne may be good for the skin. A 2016 twin study shows that people who had acne in their teen years tend to preserve their youthful look longer than their clear-skinned peers.
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