Why Skin Care is Related to Self Care

Recently I’ve been very absorbed in skin care in my practice.  I see a lot of patients with different skin problems and love being able to provide my medical suggestions for their conditions.

One thing I’ve noticed of late is how much skin care is connected to self-care.  Many people have acne flare ups when they’re stressed, eat poorly, and don’t take good care of themselves.  When I observe someone’s skin, I know that it tells me a story.  Sometimes, it’s the story of a busy mother of two without time for themselves.  It’s also the story of older women who have never been told that sunlight can severely damage their skin’s integrity.  It’s also the story of men and women who have taken the steps to notice the condition of their skin and come to me with questions for solutions.

As a dermatology pharmacist, a lot of my focus has been shifted to skin treatment for various issues such as acne vulgaris, rosacea, hyperpigmentation, and eczema.  One of my passions is counseling on different skin medications and prescribing different dermatology medications.

My bedtime routine includes some light reading and a facial mask

Skin Care is Therapeutic

For some, skincare routines each evening can take anywhere between 5-20 minutes.  For those who spend longer on their skin, usually they are in their bathroom, in a quiet setting where they are in front of the mirror observing their skin.  The process of simply being alone can be meditative.  You’re not distracted by your cellphone or other housemates.  Even just taking a few minutes out of the day to look at ourselves in the mirror can help relieve anxiety and stress.  It’s a calming routine before bed.

Having lived in Alberta for most of my life, using a good moisturizer is key to protecting my skin against eczema flare-ups.

Good Skin Care Protects You Against Skin Problems

Having overcome my bad habit of popping pimples as a teenager, I can safely say that there are several skin infections and problems that can result from improper skin care.  For example, not wearing adequate sunscreen can cause skin cancers and premature aging.  For both men and women, premature aging such as crepe skin can make us look older than our actual age.  Moreover, not being aware of how to address problems such as eczema can cause open wounds and breaks in the skin creating infection and inflammation.

Skin Care Routines Offer Stability and Structure

 In our current chaotic schedules, there’s a lot of moving parts.  Especially for busy AU students juggling different responsibilities.  Similar to brushing your teeth before bed, skin care can offer predictability to the day.  For myself, in the morning taking a few minutes to pat some serum into my face, then applying a generous amount of sunscreen helps set the tone for the rest of the day.  Rather than show up to work rushed and stressed, I feel calmer following my daily skin routine.

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