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May 02, 2019 2 min read

 

Mental health is a conversation a lot of men tend to shy away from. Many of us aren't in touch with our emotions and withdraw from any conversation that leads towards unveiling those emotions or lack thereof. You know what else we aren’t good at? Dealing with illnesses or conditions that affect our mental health, like our skin.

Mental health and skin problems; two words you wouldn’t think to have such familiarity, yet the repercussions of skin issues flow into many elements of our lives.

Two common skin conditions are acne and psoriasis, both of which are common in men -- and can cause serious issues to your overall quality of life.

Psoriasis speeds up the life cycle of skin cells, causing cells to build up on the surface quite rapidly. Those extra cells form scales and red patches which can be itchy and painful - but most commonly, don’t look very good. It can come and go throughout much of your life - and there isn’t any real cure either.

Acne is very common during teenage years, but many people struggle with acne throughout their adult lives. Over 10% of adult males experience moderate to pretty bad acne in their adulthood, and the psychological effects are pretty dire.


Sometimes, poor mental health can cause skin issues - and sometimes those skin issues can cause poor mental health. Some of the psychological effects of skin conditions include:

  • Depression
  • Suicidal Thoughts
  • Lack of Confidence
  • Social Withdrawal
  • Anxiety

Psychosocial distress is a natural response to skin issues, especially in a society that spends more on their appearance than on social welfare, health and education combined. And we’re not talking about just for women. Another complicated layer is the guilt we feel for feeling insecure about our appearances - how it makes us feel shallow or vain - which adds to our negative outlook on ourselves.

 

It’s important to understand that:

  • Feeling insecure about your skin is okay
  • You are entitled to your feelings
  • Taking productive measures such as talking to your doctor about both your skin and your mental health will improve your quality of life
  • Talking to your doctor may help you find options to help a skin condition you may have
  • It might be helpful to talk to your doctor about the way your skin makes you feel

Globally, every minute - a man dies by suicide. We need to change that.

Contact  www.cmha.ca to get help.

 


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