How Your Mental Health Impacts Your Skin Health
Have you heard of the brain-skin connection? Well, it's a thing, and you need to know about it.
It so happens that the brain plays a huge role not only in how we feel but with our skin health too.
Why, you ask? Well, the brain exerts its influence through the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA system) which is also known as our stress system since it controls when stress hormones like cortisol are released.
That means when we are feeling overwhelmed or anxious, our brain releases stress hormones that affect our immune cells which can trigger skin conditions (like eczema flare-ups) or aggravate existing ones.
Along with the HPA system in the brain, there's also an HPA system in our skin cells which means when we are stressed, our brain and our skin cells are both releasing stress hormones.
The fact of the matter is that ourstress can literally age us and aggravate our skin, resulting in breakouts, inflammation, eczema and more.
Even though I am a high functioning, health-full person I still have skin some challenges as well as some mental health issues.
Over the past while, I have also had a lot of extra worry due to the declining health of some close family members which has resulted in me not sleeping or eating well. Not surprisingly, I have not been looking my best.
Using my mind to help remedy my redness flare-ups has not only proved to be effective, but it also helps take the seriousness out of the situation. I know the splotches on my skin are a stress response and a message that my body is sending me to calm down, be positive, sleep more, stay committed to eating clean and keep hydrated.
I am sharing the brain-skin connection visualization sequence with you that I do before I go to sleep and upon getting out of bed.
Before you start, please settle into a comfortable position. Close your eyes and spend a minute or two following your breath or doing a quick body scan. Once you’ve dropped into your body, bring your attention to your face.
1. Visualize yourself with a miniature vacuum cleaner with a nozzle gently moving over your face and pulling out the unwanted debris and detritus causing your skin to be inflamed and/or congested.
2. Spend extra time on irritated areas where you have blackheads, whiteheads, pimples and splotches.
3. Do this until you’ve covered everywhere including your neck, and décolleté.
4. Now imagine a soft cloth (like the type one would use to polish fine silver) smoothing over your face and softening any fine lines, creases and wrinkles on your forehead, around your eyes, mouth, cheeks, neck and chest.
5. Imagine this magical cloth leaving you with smooth, soft clear skin.
6. Thank your skin for all that is does for you and in its imperfect perfection.
Close your visualization by taking a deep breath, stretching your arms over your head.
Once I'm a better state of mind I like to move onto my regular skincare routine. Check out my AM and PM skincare routine here.