Living with acne is a daily reality that many people face as adolescents. For some, however, that reality can persist into adulthood as an infrequent nuisance or a chronic condition. No matter whether you get the occasional blemish or frequently struggle to maintain clear skin, acne can be frustrating. So here are some ways you can combat acne no matter where or why it appears.
1. Ask for Help
These days, there are myriad medicines that address different types of acne. In fact, there are so many that it can be difficult to figure out which is right for you. And while you could consult a dermatologist, that can be another headache in itself.
First, you have to find a doctor with good credentials, who can also give you accurate information. Then you have to actually schedule the appointment. If the doctor is any good, they’ll probably be booked for a while. You may eventually wait it out and get to see them, but your wallet may not appreciate it.
Thankfully, you can now get acne treatment online. These services allow you to connect directly with medical professionals who will create solutions custom-tailored to your needs. You can even get your medicines shipped right to your door. Online treatments are one of the quickest and easiest ways to address your acne.
2. Tidy Up
Medical intervention can prove quite effective in combating acne and may even be necessary for some people. But there are also small things you can do that may have a big impact on your skin’s health. One such thing is maintaining a clean home and especially a clean bed.
If you infrequently change your bedsheets, you may be sabotaging your skin. The more nights you sleep in the same sheets, the more dirt, oils, and dead skin cells accumulate on them. In turn, this can clog your pores and lead to breakouts.
Make sure you’re changing your sheets every week or two. Do so more often if you live in a humid climate, a city with pollution, or have naturally oily skin. It may seem trivial at first, but this small change can make a huge difference in your skin day to day. Plus, who doesn’t love the feeling of fresh, clean sheets?
3. Get Moving
Exercising directly benefits your overall health, and your skin’s health is no exception. Regular exercise balances hormone and blood sugar levels, which can lead to breakouts if they’re too high. Cortisol is a stress hormone that can prompt skin glands to produce excess sebum, or oil. That extra sebum will clog your pores, inviting bacteria to move in and form pimples.
There are a number of other hormones that act on these sebum-producing glands as well, all regulated by insulin. If there is too much sugar in your blood, your body will respond by producing more insulin. And, as you may guess, those elevated insulin levels get your oil glands pumping and clogging.
As noted, exercise directly regulates both cortisol and blood sugar levels. So if you haven’t had a proper sweat recently, consider renewing that gym membership. Your gym may also have a sauna, which will flush dirt out of your pores. Just make sure to hit the showers afterward to stay squeaky clean.
4. Cut Out Sugar
If you do have elevated blood sugar, exercise will definitely help. But it’s also important to understand why it’s elevated in the first place.
Some foods, like fruit, contain natural sugars. But many food companies will often add sugar to their products to make them taste better. A sweet snack now and then is fine, but consuming too many can easily push your blood sugar levels above normal. Unfortunately, avoiding added sugars is more difficult now than ever before. They’re even in bread!
However, the FDA requires companies to list their products’ nutritional content on food labels. These labels may be tricky to read at first, but there are many guides online that will help you learn how. While there is no one-size-fits-all diet, just remember that you can find most added sugars in processed foods.
So if you want to avoid added sugars, stick to eating unprocessed foods like fresh produce and lean meats. If you’re able to find seasonal, locally sourced foods, even better. Your skin and your other organs will thank you.
5. Chill Out
Stress has a direct impact on your skin’s health. As noted earlier, too much cortisol will lead to breakouts. Thankfully, there are many excellent ways to destress built right into your body!
One of the quickest and easiest ways to destress is to take a walk. Going for a walk helps balance your hormones just as more strenuous exercise does. This activity is even better at relieving stress if there’s a nice park or trail to enjoy nearby.
What if you can’t go for a walk right now? Close your eyes and focus on your breath instead. Human beings have meditated for thousands of years, and meditation has numerous recorded health benefits. Even just five minutes will help you destress and stabilize your hormone levels.
Another area of skin health that’s often overlooked is sleep. As you sleep, your cortisol levels naturally decline. Also, a lack of sleep can weaken your body’s immune system while simultaneously increasing stress. It’s called beauty sleep for a reason!
Pick and Choose As Needed
Dealing with acne can be a frustrating experience. But it doesn’t have to be as hard as it might seem at first. You may need to focus on developing healthy habits or getting external help as required. No matter what you choose, there are many ways you can take control of your skin health right now.