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Article written by John Q. Cook, MD and Joy Edmonds, LC

Almost everyone has experienced an increase in stress due to the coronavirus outbreak. Stress can have many negative effects on the entire body, especially the largest organ of the body — your skin.

We all use the term “stress’ very loosely. What exactly is stress? Stress is the body’s reaction to any change that requires an adjustment or response. It can help to get us through short term emergencies, but prolonged stress damages our body and our spirits. Stress can cause high blood pressure, anxiety, palpitations, and many other physical symptoms. Stress also weakens the immune system, which is essential to fighting infections.

Now that we know what stress is, let us discuss its effect on the skin. Stress can cause a reaction within the skin, resulting in hypersensitivity. Such hypersensitivity may cause rashes, acne flares, skin that itches and flares of otherwise well-controlled skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, lupus, etc. This can produce a breakdown of the skin’s natural defensive barrier.

What are ways to manage stress and the effects that it may have on your skin?

1. Pay attention to your body. We all may experience different symptoms of stress. Being aware of your specific symptoms is key.

2. Meditation can be extremely helpful in managing/reducing stress. Take time to be still be present, more aware of your breathing and heartbeat.

3. For management of your skin during stressful times, avoid trying new complex skincare products.

3. Maintain a gentle skin care regimen of a gentle cleanser and moisturizer. Avoid irritants that can exacerbate hypersensitive skin.

We Have Several Products that Are Suitable for a Gentle Skin Care Regimen

These products are available on our Whole Beauty Skincare website.

WBR3 Plus

WBR3 Plus GF

Hydrating Peptide Serum

Calming Cleanser

Intensive Moisture

Hylasilk

Maximum Recovery

Eye Renew GF

Although our offices are closed due to the outbreak, we can be reached remotely at our usual numbers during normal business hours. We are here to help you in any way, including questions about skin care or skin products.

Chicago | 312-751-2112

Winnetka | 847-446-7562

We can also be reached at info@johnqcookmd.com

How we manage stress can affect our overall health as well as our skin. We encourage you to find ways to positively manage your stress.