Our skin will often show a external reaction to something we've eaten, touched or encountered. Some common reactions erupt as rashes, such as: eczema, hives or heat rash. Other examples of skin reactions can also appear in the form of hyperpigmentation, acne breakouts, sensitivity to the sun and more. Getting to the root of where they started can be rather difficult. After you finish this article you will be informed to root causes of why your skin reacts.
A good place to start is with the medications and supplements you take. Birth control pills can cause hyperpigmentation and trigger acne breakouts-this can happen when starting the pill as well as discontinuing it. If you’re prone to acne, screen your vitamins for kelp, seaweed or straight iodine (potassium iodide). The body only needs trace amounts of iodine and the rest will be released through bodily fluids, like sweat and can irritate the skin.
Antihistamines have a drying effect and can cause your skin to become dehydrated. This applies not only to prescription antihistamines but over the counter brands as well, for any allergies or sinus congestion. Some medications are known to cause sensitivity to UV light, as does antibiotics. Steroids and medicines containing bromides (frequently found in cold medicine) can cause an inflammation of the follicle that will lead to acne breakouts.
Our external environment can not be ignored when talking about skin reactions. Smog and dirt can clog our pores while toxins in the air can cause premature aging of our skin. Although our air quality in San Diego is not as bad as some bigger cities, it’s important to be aware that it does affect our skin and that’s why proper cleansing is crucial.
Changes in our own bodies as a reaction to stress, menstruation, pregnancy or disease can also show up through our skin. Stress and pregnancy can lead to hyperpigmentation and breakouts and during pregnancy, some women experience “melasma” which is the darkening of the skin around the cheeks and forehead. Many women will experience a healthy glow during pregnancy, but that’s not always the case. Menstruation can cause greater sensitivity to light as well as breakouts due to increase in sebum production during this time.
Health conditions such as diabetes can cause the skin to take longer to heal and they may bleed and bruise easily. Liver diseases increases the skin’s susceptibility to bruise and skin has more red dilated blood vessels. Thyroid conditions, such as an over-active thyroid, can cause the skin to be thin, moist and covered in sweaty fine hair. An under-active thyroid will cause the skin to be rough, dry, decreased sweat and hair growth. Thyroid hormones play an important role with the skin's oil production. This is why it’s important to let your skin care professional know about changes in your health.
Our skin, kidneys, lungs and liver have important roles in the excretion of waste from the body. If you have elimination problems you might experience some skin conditions such as acne, psoriasis and eczema. If you have “chicken skin” (bumpy, dry skin) on the back of your arms or back you probably have excess uric acid in your system and better elimination is needed.
Our skin can be a reflection of what is going on in the inside of our bodies as well as the outside. By working together, we can achieve the best skin care results possible.