Acne: ‘Breaking Out’ of Quarantine
As if a global pandemic isn’t bad enough, it’s very possible you’ve noticed an increase in your acne flare-ups since COVID-19 hit.
In a recent survey by the research firm Dynata, 25 percent of the 1000 women who participated said they’re experiencing more acne since COVID-19 hit. However, that number goes all the way up to 55 percent for those under 25. Considering about 50 million people* are impacted by acne all year round, that’s a staggering number of people who may be worried about ‘facing life’ after sheltering in place, making the choice to go back to school or work even harder.
Zit Happens: Acne and COVID-19
Acne is the most common skin condition in the US. The added stress, fear, frustration, lack of sleep, and overall lifestyle changes that have come with the mandate to “stay home” are causing many people to see an increase in acne flare-ups.
But these aren’t the only ways your skin may be impacted:
- Your daily routines and schedules have likely changed dramatically.
- Your priorities have likely shifted (uh, there’s a pandemic out there), and taking care of your skin may have gone to the very bottom of the list.
- You may have changed the way you’re eating. Sugary and starchy foods can increase your blood sugar levels, which could increase flare-ups.
- Social distancing and isolation may be adding to your stress levels causing your stress hormones, including cortisol, to kick into a new gear, revving up oil production on your skin.
- You may not be exercising or moving like you were.
- The face masks you use to protect yourself and others from the transmission of the virus may be irritating your skin and causing breakouts. In fact, a whole new term – “maskne” has been coined.
- Sitting in front of your computer to do your schoolwork or attend meetings online may mean you’re leaning on your hands and touching your face more. These can all lead to skin irritation and inflammation, which can promote acne breakouts.
A recent survey of 260,000 people, just released by the CDC and the Census Bureau, found that one in three Americans have reported feeling a strain on their mental health in the form of increased stress, anxiety and depression since April. And this strain can certainly increase flare-ups.
Let’s Get Everything Perfectly Clear
At Advanced Dermatology, we understand your acne affects more than your skin. It affects how you look and how you feel about how you look. Even the mildest breakouts can be embarrassing, but added to the stress of the pandemic, can feel overwhelming. While there is no cure for acne, our dermatologists and other expert acne specialists have a number of effective treatment options available and will customize your treatment plan to your specific needs.
What treatments does Advanced Dermatology offer for acne?
There are many treatments available for acne, including over-the-counter, prescription-strength and procedural therapies. Over-the-counter therapies are topical (including newer medicated soap bars) and include the ingredients benzoyl peroxide, glycolic acid, retinol, salicylic acid or sulfur. Some may be too harsh or drying for acne-prone skin.
Advanced Dermatology specialists will evaluate your skin and create an individualized plan which may include prescription-strength therapies including topical retinoid, antibiotic and anti-inflammatory medications, and oral medications (antibiotics, hormone regulators, and retinoids).
Skincare Products & Procedures
We may recommend dermatologist-tested skincare products, or in-office procedural treatments includT
ing facials, chemical peels, lasers and light therapy. Procedures like dermaplaning can get rid of all the little fuzzy hairs on your face, which makes skincare serums go on better and makes your skin look fresher and brighter.
Combining medical and procedural therapies often leads to better results.
What else will help acne prone skin?
- The role food and nutrition play with acne is unclear, but it’s always best to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet. Refined sugars, processed foods, and foods with hormones may overstimulate sebum production. Avoiding those may help.
- Look for products that are oil-free or non-comedogenic (not acne causing) when shopping for skin care and make up.
- Avoid touching your face.
As always, we are here to care for you. Schedule your appointment today by booking online, by calling us at 866.400.3376 or by calling for a Telehealth appointment at 844.989.3376. Shop online for our R|Essentials line of dermatologist-recommended acne products.