Does stress make your skin darker?

Stress and hyperpigmentation

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It is common knowledge that stress can drastically affect your body. It’s been connected to illness like cancer and heart disease, and can also make you grow older faster. Furthermore, according to experts, stress can also change the color of your skin.

How stress can make your skin darker

Stress does not directly trigger the darkening of the skin. However, the change in color is indirect. Patients under stress can abuse or disregard their skin by scratching or rubbing their skin. Rubbing causes swelling in the skin activating all type of cells, including melanocytes, that causes the skin to get darker.

What is hyperpigmentation?

Hyperpigmentation is a condition that triggers the skin to darken. It can happen in little spots, cover big areas or the whole body. This condition normally isn’t harmful; however, it can be a symptom of another medical condition.

What does stress do to your skin?

Ways stress can impact your looks

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If you do not handle your stress correctly, it may show in your face, hair and in your general appearance. It won’t be pretty. Below are ways stress can affect your looks.

Stress leads to under-eye bags

Stress can keep you from getting a good night sleep. Lack of enough sleep can cause fluid to collect in the lower eyelid area. This results in a puffy mess in the morning. The puff is even worse for people who sleep on their stomachs. 

How to prevent and reduce under-eye bags caused by stress

Get at least eight hours of sleep. Since the light from your mobile phone’s screen imitates sunshine, shut off any electronic gadgets an hour before bed. Use that time to drink a cup of caffeine-free chamomile tea, to help relax you before sleeping. In case you wake up with puffy eyes, use a cold spoon to massage the area outwards to drain the fluids. Then, use concealer in an inverted triangle under your eye where the brightness starts from the nostril gradually to the eye, hiding the puffiness.

Stress leads to acne

Stress causes skin problems to flare. When stressed, cortisol is released. This can throw off the other hormones in your body and cause breakouts. Stress can also affect the balance between the good bacteria and the bad bacteria in the stomach leading to the appearance of acne.

Preventing acne caused by stress

Practice deep breathing to soothe any anxiety. Eating healthy and drinking lots of water is crucial. Your body cannot deal with stress if not properly fed. Furthermore, add fruits and vegetables in your diet and cut down on sugar.

Stress leads to dry, flaky skin

If you’re stressed out, chances are you’re not drinking enough water. You may also be consuming coffee or soda, which can be dehydrating. And if your body doesn’t get the correct hydration it needs, your skin will be dry and flaky.

How to prevent dry skin when stressed

The obvious solution is to drinks lots of water. Some recommend more than 8 glasses a day. You can also eat foods that have high water content. These include fruits and vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers, beets, and celery. They are over 80% water. For a quick hydration fix, utilize a serum that contains hyaluronic acid, an active ingredient that naturally occurs in your body. 

Stress leads to fine lines

Stress can trigger some facial expressions like pursing of the lips or furrowing the eyebrows. This can cause deeper wrinkles.

Preventing fine lines caused by stress

Be careful not to make facial expressions unconsciously especially when you are stressed. There are also many ways of training your muscles to reduce involuntary movements.

Stress leads to rashes and hives

They are caused by the imbalance of good and bad bacteria in the gut. When stress takes over, there are too many bad bacteria than the good ones.

Preventing rashes and hives caused by stress

Breathing sessions can keep the rashes and hives caused by stress at bay. You, however, need medical attention as well. You may need some prescribed medication to balance the bacteria again. 

Stress leads to graying hair

For the people liable to growing gray hair, stress can stop the production of melanin in the hair, leaving it grey. Moreover, stress can make your hair grow thinner.

Preventing graying hair caused by stress

Vitamin B or biotin strengthens the hair, talk to a doctor about using it. There are shampoos rich in proteins that can be used to prevent premature aging of the hair. 

Stress leads to flushed face

When you’re stressed, you breathe in short, shallow breaths. This usually means you hold your breath longer, which can lead to flushing and redness.

Preventing redness caused by stress

Breathe in a relaxing beauty elixir to keep you from feeling super-stressed. You can also think happy thoughts to brighten your mood. This helps reduce your levels of stress. The flushing only lasts about 10 minutes, but to hide any pink tones on your face instantly, you can use an anti-redness foundation.

Stress leads to thinning of the hair

Stress accelerates the natural cycle of hair. It rushes through the growing phase and the resting phase to the falling out stage. 

Preventing thinning and losing hair because of stress

Hair loss is usually a reaction to substantial physiological stress triggered by an extreme modification in your diet plan, medical issues, or unexpected lifestyle changes, like switching your birth control, a health problem, or the stress of breaking up with your partner. Once the culprit of your hair loss is attended to and under control, your hair will go back to its regular growing system and begin to grow and shed as normal. If you are losing your hair at an alarming rate, then you should see a doctor. For a quick thickening repair, utilize a thickening serum or spray to create the appearance of fuller hair.

Stress leads to thinning of the hair

Stress accelerates the natural cycle of hair. It rushes through the growing phase and the resting phase to the falling out stage. 

Preventing thinning and losing hair because of stress

Hair loss is usually a reaction to substantial physiological stress triggered by an extreme modification in your diet plan, medical issues, or unexpected lifestyle changes, like switching your birth control, a health problem, or the stress of breaking up with your partner. Once the culprit of your hair loss is attended to and under control, your hair will go back to its regular growing system and begin to grow and shed as normal. If you are losing your hair at an alarming rate, then you should see a doctor. For a quick thickening repair, utilize a thickening serum or spray to create the appearance of fuller hair.

Stress leads to deep grooves in your nails

Vertical lines are common on nails and normally are connected to aging and, sometimes, an absence in specific vitamins, but they’re harmless Day states. Horizontal grooves, however, are more serious and are caused by the body being stressed. 

Preventing grooves in the nails caused by stress

The horizontal grooves need immediate medical attention considering that they can be in some cases caused by diabetes, syphilis, zinc shortage, and vascular illness. In the meantime, go for some yoga classes.

Other reasons why your skin is changing color

Why has my skin tone gone darker?

Vitiligo causes your skin to change color

If you are experiencing loss of color in the hair on your body or head or inside your mouth, they might have vitiligo. A dermatologist who has experience with this condition should be consulted. 

Eczema causes the skin to lose pigmentation

Another condition common during warm-weather is pityriasis alba, which initially causes red, scaly patches which then leaves lighter patches on the skin. This condition appears to be a feature of eczema that’s merely more evident on tanned skin. Sunscreen is the way to go if you want to deal with this condition. A topical steroid is used if the condition is severe.

Mixing limes and sunshine can change your skin color

When sunlight reacts to a chemical in lime or citrus, it results in a skin condition called phytophotodermatitis. The first signs of the condition are blisters or burning which are often dismissed as sunburn or allergic reactions. This is then followed by pigment changes which generally fade in a few months. 

Pregnancy can make your skin darker

While vitiligo causes a loss of coloring in the skin, melasma or “the mask of pregnancy” can cause some skin cells to produce more pigment, which normally appears as brown patches on the face. Pregnancy makes it bad, contraception makes it even worse, and sunlight is the worst. After you are done with the pregnancy and the birth control and you keep away from direct sunlight, your condition will improve. However, it is not immediate. Chemical peels and laser therapies can help with the flare-ups. 

Past skin damage changes the skin color

Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation is the term for this situationThis is where you used to have an injury, allergic reaction, acne or other forms of inflammation on the skin.

Acanthosis nigricans causes the darkening of the skin

This is the darkening and thickening of skin folds, such as those in your neck or under your breasts. This is common in obese people, but could also mean you have diabetes. 

Addison’s disease causes the skin to become darker

Addison’s disease is due to the inability of the adrenal glands to produce enough hormones. People with this condition can become darker without any direct contact with sunlight. Such people should visit a doctor. 

Fungus can change the skin color

Tinea versicolor is a typical fungal infection which is relatively safe and sometimes invisible. When the natural yeast on our skin overgrows it usually appears in the hot and humid summer– or among individuals who’ve gone to those environments. It usually appears where people sweat the most. It is red, white or brown.

Cancer causes the skin to change color

Cancer is, obviously, the worst-case situation for oddly-colored skin. Luckily, it is a rare pigmentation concern. If you have melanoma and your skin turns slate blue, then it means that the melanoma is cancerous and has gone through the body. If you have moles that change color, shape, and then seek immediate medical help.

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