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Study Shows Care of Skin, Hair Affects Emotional Health

Posted: February 20, 2009

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“It is fair to say that when people are under stress, they tend to fall off the wagon in terms of practicing good skin care,” said Dr. Fried. “They may not use their sunscreen or their skin care products when they’re feeling stressed, because all of their energy and focus is being diverted by their ongoing stress. They also might not be eating or sleeping as well or staying hydrated, which all can contribute to a dull or lack-luster appearance.”

With accurate diagnoses by a dermatologist, effective treatments improve the appearance and function of the skin. This alone can substantially reduce patients’ stress and improve their skin, hair and nail conditions. However, Dr. Fried noted that if stress is clearly interfering with patients’ overall well-being and ability to cope, simultaneous stress management interventions are warranted. In some instances, referral to a mental health professional who has an interest and understanding of skin problems may be warranted.

Cosmetic interventions

While skin rejuvenation procedures have been shown to significantly improve a person’s outward appearance, studies suggest these types of cosmetic interventions also can have positive effects on how people feel and how they function.

“When people feel more attractive and more confident in their appearance, they tend to perform better in other areas of their lives—in their work, family life, social life, and marriage or personal relationships,” explained Dr. Fried. “Under the right circumstances, cosmetic procedures can be a powerful ally. But it’s important for patients to understand that these procedures are not a panacea. Realistic expectations are the key to effectively delivered promises.”