10 Best Exercises to Relieve Stress

10 Best Exercises to Relieve Stress


Stress – quite a familiar word these days, isn’t it?


Whether it’s work, kids, or your partner – everything contributes to stress. And undoubtedly, it can be tiring and mentally exhausting. It sucks out your energy to finish the rest of your day or commence with a new one.


All of us have a different coping mechanism when it comes to stress. It could be gaming, gardening, painting, or talking to your friends.

However, the ideal way to beat stress is – that’s right – EXERCISE! 


Let’s look into the ten best activities that you can regularly do to relieve stress.


How Can Exercise Relieve My Stress?


Exercise can help you put stress aside in numerous ways. But, in order to understand how it does, it’s essential to know what’s happening in your body when you’re under pressure.


The neurochemical basis of this phenomenon is quite simple. Stress stimulates the release of cortisol (the stress-causing hormone) and adrenaline (the fight-or-flight hormone). These hormones are the ones driving your stress and are the main culprits behind your anxious behaviour and inability to perform well.


Moreover, exercising also causes the release of endorphins that are known as happy neurotransmitters. Therefore, when you exercise, there’s a significant decrease in the levels of these hormones. Conversely, as their levels increase, you feel better about yourself and in control of the situation you’re stuck in.


Beat The Stress With These 10 Exercises!

 

woman taking stress

 

Now that you are fully aware of stress – it’s about time you took back the charge. Stress does not only ruin your ability to get done with the tasks, but it also makes you doubt yourself and your capabilities.


To avoid problems, it’s best to knock the stress with the following exercises:


1. Brisk Walking


Let’s begin with the easiest one of them all – walking. But we walk every day, right? So why are we still stressed then? Well, brisk walking and just moving from one corner to get a task done is different.


Brisk walking allows you to use your muscles better but prevents you from tiring out. It’s known that people with a proper walking regimen can cope with their stress better and are healthier as well, both mentally and physically.


Brisk walking is the ideal way to get started on this mission of beating stress.


2. Tai Chi


Tai chi is a series of self-paced fluid body movements and heavily promotes serenity through various moves. Originally tai chi was an ancient internal Chinese form of martial arts used for meditation, health purposes, and more. However, it is also known to increase flexibility and calm those stress levels down. 


Tai chi puts minimal pressure on the muscles and joints, making it accessible to all ages. So if you are looking for something refreshing, then tai chi might be for you!


3. Pilates


Pilates is also a physical fitness system developed in the early 20th century. It aids in the treatment of depression and anxiety. However, it is not solely designed just to strengthen the muscles and improve body balance.


If you wish to build a self-care routine, you expect a noticeable change after reinforcing this in your life. You’ll feel your mental state sharpening and experience better performance.


Concentrating on your breathing and good thinking will definitely switch the stressed mode into a better one. 


4. Yoga


Yoga is an activity that we hear most fitness gurus talk about. The main reason is that yoga consists mainly of postures and can gradually increase your joints’ flexibility.


Yoga focuses on meditation and breathing techniques which can help one distress. Studies have shown that people who consistently perform yoga have a higher chance of lowering stress levels.


Not only that, but you’ll also be able to lose some of those pounds as yoga is an effective tool for weight loss.


5. Dancing


Suppose there is one thing that almost everybody enjoys doing is; dancing. Dance often has categorised movements, and specific choreographies help us detect the mood of each form.


For many people, dancing serves as a perfect way to relieve their stress. This is because dancing helps the brain release endorphins- chemicals that act as natural painkillers. It also improves our ability to sleep, meaning reduced stress levels.


So the next time you feel stressed, hit your jam and dance the stress away!


6. HIIT Workout


HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) is a combination of high-intensity bursts of cardio exercise followed by long or equal rests.


An example of a HIIT workout would be 50 to 90 seconds of squats after warming up, followed by slow jogging. Along with lower risks of heart diseases, it reduces signs of stress, anxiety, and various other problems associated with stress.


7. Swimming


Swimming is the best form of exercise on this list. Since you need to move your body against the water’s resistance, it proves to be an all-rounder activity.


Furthermore, it keeps your heart rate in check, lowers the chances of stress, and keeps you active throughout. Swimming is definitely the perfect stress relief exercise if you love water in general.


8. Kickboxing


Kickboxing is about combat that mainly includes kicking and punching. It also helps you release endorphins and reduce anxiety and stress levels.

On top of that, you’ll notice your waistline shrinking!


9. Outdoor Activities


Outdoor activities such as biking and walking may seem insignificant, but they largely contribute to one’s stable mental health.


Being in the fresh air is most likely to result in increased blood circulation to the brain, release of good hormones such as serotonin – which are responsible for making you feel happy, and just an overall sense of well-being. 


10. Qigong


Qigong is also an ancient Chinese healing exercise that includes proper breathing and meditation. Mainly referred to as Asian yoga that has been around for thousands of years.


It involves slow movements that the Chinese and Asia recognise as a healing and rhythmic practice that cultivates balance and brings energy.


Trails have indicated that qigong is effective when it comes to dealing with pressure and stress. It enhances your health all over and maintains blood pressure.


Conclusion


It’s OK to stress because – let’s get real for a while – it gets a lot of our tasks done. But stressing about everything, even the minor problems, is not healthy at all. 


You can either pick one exercise and start with that or try a combination of these exercises. Making a plan, and dedicating a particular slot to these exercises, can help you curb the stress.


Moreover, if you’re starting a fitness program to beat stress, it’d be best to consult a professional and get their opinion as well.

 

Healthy Snacks For Teenagers On-The-Go

Healthy Snacks For Teenagers On-The-Go


Being a teenager, you must have at least once a while ended up eating stuff like chips, candy, muffins, cookies, pastry, etc. Any teen would tend to go for a quicker way to eat some sweet, salty or any other high carbohydrate food when hunger strikes. 


It’s perfectly fine to have snacks like that, but having an unhealthy snack can seriously harm your health, especially if you have a big appetite for snacks. So let’s get to know how you can have a snack full of nutrients that keeps your body healthy and active, just not till your teen years but for the lifetime!


Why Should You Eat Healthy Snacks During Teen Years?


During your teen years, you need to have a balanced diet. It helps your mind and body to stay active, fit and healthy in the long run, as during this age, your body goes through various changes (i.e. hormonal changes, organ development, bone growth, etc.). 


Moreover, the kind of food you consume not only affects you physically but socially too. For instance, a poor diet can lead you to have bad eyesight and skin, lowering your confidence and self-esteem. So, you must not only fill your stomach but get all the necessary nutrients to stay healthy for a longer time.


Healthy Snacks For Teens!

 

lunch ideas for teens

 

Your food should not only match your tastes but also fulfil your body needs too! Having knowledge about healthy food can help you to plan a proper diet for your snack. 


While preparing your snacks, you may look into the following options:


  • Veggies, Fruits and Dried Fruits
  • Dark Chocolate And Snack Bars
  • Fruit Juices or Smoothies
  • Whole Grain Varieties
  • Beans
  • Eggs
  • Dairy Food

Veggies, Fruits And Dried Fruits


Veggies, fruits and dried fruits are often called dietary fibre because they are low in fat while an excellent source of minerals, vitamins, iron, potassium, and fibre. It can help you prevent some types of cancer, control blood sugar level, heart diseases, and encourage normal functioning of the thyroid. 


You can have two servings of fruits and three servings of vegetables daily for a healthy diet. A veggie wrap containing spinach, carrots, tomato, and cucumbers each day is a very healthy and tasty choice, or you can eat a few dates if you’re craving something sweet.


Dark Chocolate And Snack Bars


Dark chocolate and snack bars have antioxidants, anti-inflammatory and brain function improvement content. Chocolate containing 70% or more cocoa is a powerful source of nutrition. It also helps to improve blood flow and lower blood pressure. 


You can spread dark chocolate on brown bread or opt for the snack bars made with oats and is sweetened with dried or fresh fruit. You can also use dark chocolate as a syrup on fresh berries.


Fruit Juices Or Smoothies


Drinking 100% pure and unsweetened fruit juices or smoothies can help your digestive system. It has more vitamins than a supplement so, taking at least 150 ml of a variety of fruit and vegetables each day is enough to supply your body with the necessary nutrients. 


However, some juices should be taken with a meal as it contains high sugar (Fructose) which can cause damage to your teeth. And also, it may have more calories, and less fibre after the fruit is processed for juice. So, you may have to vary the amount and ingredients to keep your diet balanced and healthy.


Whole Grain Varieties


Whole grain varieties such as potatoes without skin, brown bread, crackers and other starchy carbohydrates contain high fibre, vitamin B and many other nutrients. They help to reduce the risk of heart diseases, prevent constipation and protect against cancer properties. Also, it takes more time to digest, which stops us from overeating while controlling our weight.


However, adding butter or any other creamy sauces to such food increases its fat content. So, you should take any whole grain varieties without added contents. 


Beans


Beans are naturally high in protein, vitamins and fibre with healthy fats. They help to control your appetite, fatty liver, diabetes and metabolism.


You can have hummus as it contains chickpeas or roast dried chickpeas for your snack time as it will help you gain its nutritional benefits. Make sure to cook chickpeas before eating, as raw chickpeas are difficult to digest and contain toxins that may harm your health.


Eggs


Eggs contain vitamin A, calcium, iron, folates, vitamin B, phosphorus and selenium. It has antioxidant properties that help you to maintain your eyesight. Furthermore, eggs are a high protein treat because it fills your stomach as a meal would.


Eggs are not only delicious but a very healthy and extremely versatile option for teen’s snack time as they can be scrambled, boiled, poached or made into an omelette. You can add healthy veggies and wrap them in brown bread and eat them as an egg sandwich.


Dairy Food


Dairy foods such as milk, yoghurt and cheese, are essential sources of healthy fats, protein, calcium, B12, vitamins A and D. Calcium and vitamin D help your body to build strong bones and improve the functioning of muscles and nerves. 


You can use plain yoghurt as a dipping sauce or add it to cottage cheese with fresh or thawed frozen fruits. Choose lower-fat varieties such as semi-skimmed or skimmed milk, cottage cheese, Edam cheese and half fat cheddars for your snack items.


To Sum Up


Getting healthy protein, vitamins, and fats during your teen years is essential for your body’s proper growth, development, and functionality. If snack foods are properly planned, then they are not only tasty but also full of healthy nutrients. Also, eating healthy from a young age helps avoid many health risks and increases the chances of leading a healthy and happy life. 

 

Concentration Difficulties: Why You Have Trouble Focusing

Concentration Difficulties: Why You Have Trouble Focusing


Whether it is listening to the teacher at school or getting the office work done on time – there are times when we are unable to perform well. Why? Simply because of our inability to concentrate on the task on hand.


Have you ever wondered why it happens? What are the problems or conditions that may cause you to have trouble while focusing? And what are the treatment options for dealing with such issues?


In this article, we will discuss all of these questions and provide you with relevant answers so that you can fix them. Of course, for some conditions, it would be wise to seek medical help. However, for other issues, you can always bring some lifestyle modifications and start feeling better eventually.


What Is Meant by Concentration Difficulties?


Your teachers might start blaming you for not studying enough, or your boss would ask you to work extra hours. And when this starts to happen, you must understand that something is not right with your body.


Concentration difficulties simply refer to the conditions or behavioural changes that depress the optimal functionality of your brain. Due to these difficulties, you can’t give your best even if you want to, leading to other problems.


P.S: It is advised to assess your situation and reach out to someone who can offer help.


How To Determine That You Have Trouble Concentrating?


Well, it could be a series of events or something drastic that might have let you believe that you’re unable to focus. Here are the symptoms that can help you in determining if you’re having trouble focusing:


  • Unable to think clearly
  • Difficulty in focusing
  • Inability to make decisions
  • Getting easily distracted
  • Unable to get done with your daily tasks
  • Repeatedly making the same mistakes
  • Not being able to sit still
  • Forgetfulness

If you are experiencing any of the above, it means that you’re indeed facing trouble while concentrating. Most of these can be improved via bringing a change in your lifestyle and having a different approach, so you can work on them and improve your health.


Symptoms That Require Medical Attention


However, you must report to a healthcare professional if you feel:


  • A tingling feeling in your hands and feet
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Immense headache
  • Unexplained fatigue
  • Continuous decrease in performance at work or school

 

If you start noticing these symptoms in your daily life, then it means there’s an underlying condition that must be checked out by a doctor.


Reasons Behind Concentration Difficulties

 

woman facing concentration difficulties

 

Now that we know the symptoms that can point towards this problem, let’s look at some of the most common reasons behind it and discuss their treatment options.


1. Fix Your Sleep Pattern


Believe it or not, not sleeping correctly can prove to be very destructible for your body. If you have a haphazard sleep pattern and don’t have a regular sleep routine, you will have difficulty concentrating.


Treatment: Fix your sleep pattern and sleep at night. It is essential to allow your body to rejuvenate and your mind to relax before the start of another day.


2. Consume Vitamins


We replaced vegetables with vitamins because that’s how important they are. However, you need to understand that what you think is a “healthy diet” might not be one. For example, if you’re strictly a vegetarian, you can develop vitamin B12 deficiency that can cause decreased functioning of your brain.


It can not only lead to concentration difficulties but severe depression and other medical conditions.


Treatment: Since B12 is found in animal foods, you can switch to fish or eggs if not meat. But if you’re strictly vegan, then you should consider getting vitamin B12 supplements.


3. Stop Stressing


Kindly stop stressing; it causes hair fall.


Now that we have your attention – it would be wise to stop stressing this instant. 😉 


Stressing about anything is not helpful in any cause. Whether it is work stress, emotional stress, exam stress and any other kinds of stress that you can think of – they all are bad for you. It may only worsen your ability to think of the task at hand. If you’re continuously overthinking and overanalyzing a situation, you wouldn’t be able to get things done.


Treatment: Stressing wouldn’t bear any results, so it’s on you and your willpower to take control of your life.


4. Don’t Multitask


While multitasking is an essential skill these days, you should know that it reduces the brain’s overall performance. It is because of the divided attention on different tasks of different nature that can make it hard for you to concentrate.


Treatment: It would be a better option to number your tasks by their importance and jump on to the next job after you have completed one.


How To Diagnose This Problem?


Once you have come to terms with the fact that this is a problem and not just something that happens to everyone – the first thing to do is go to a doctor. Your family doctor or any healthcare practitioner would prescribe you the following tests:




With the help of these tests, your doctor will finally be able to reach the root cause for your concentration difficulties. Whether nutritional, environmental, psychological or hormonal – they all can be fixed once the problem has been identified.


Conclusion


It’s okay to lose your focus on some days because it’s normal. We all have our bad and good days that determine our performance. However, if it’s happening daily and you face this problem regularly, you should seek professional help immediately.

 

Puberty Body Changes: Common Puberty Symptoms

Puberty Body Changes: Common Puberty Symptoms

 

As you’re transitioning from childhood to adulthood, your body goes through several changes in order to prepare you for life ahead. This life stage involves many psychological and physical changes, which result from shifts in hormone levels.

 

It can be a challenging and confusing time for most people, so knowing what to expect can help you feel more in control as you go through it. 

 

In this article, we will take a closer look at some of the body changes that you go through during puberty as a girl.

 

What Is Puberty?

 

Puberty is the stage when all your major organs and body systems mature. It begins with a gonadotropin-releasing hormone, which comes from a part of your brain (hypothalamus) and kicks off a hormonal chain reaction. 

 

The gonadotropin-releasing hormone stimulates your pituitary gland to release follicle-stimulating and luteinising hormones. These hormones tell your ovaries to produce sex hormones (mainly estradiol) from your ovaries. In men, the follicle-stimulating and luteinising hormones stimulate the testes to produce testosterone.

 

But as everyone is different, you may begin puberty earlier or later. Girls typically start puberty well before boys. On average, puberty lasts in girls from about the age of 9 to 15. On the other hand, puberty in boys lasts a bit longer, usually from the age of 10 to 17.

 

As puberty advances, both boys and girls encounter many emotional changes. For many, it is time to choose different ways of engaging with family and friends.

 

What Are The Signs Of Puberty In Girls?

 

acne due to puberty changes

 

You will begin to observe some changes in your body as you approach a double-figure age. These puberty symptoms are pretty similar in all teenagers, but not all follow the same pattern. 

 

Here’s an overview of the significant body changes you can expect as you go through puberty:

 

1. Pubic And Axillary Hair

 

Female puberty usually begins with the growth of pubic hair, a.k.a. pubarche.

 

Pubic hair is usually curly hair that grows in the area between your hipline and vulva, also known as the pubic area. At first, it is soft and sparse, but as you go through puberty, it will grow longer and get curly and coarse. 

 

In two or three years, it will cover your entire pubic area and may also grow on your inner thighs and toward your belly button. You will also observe hair growing under your armpits (axillary hair), around your nipples, and even a little on your upper lip (depending on your genes). 

 

2. Breast Development

 

For the majority, the first sign of puberty in girls is the development of breasts. 

 

Initially, you might feel little breast buds or swell under your nipples. After that, your breasts will gradually grow bigger and look fuller. They might also feel tender; it results from the new breast tissue growth and establishing itself. 

 

The breasts will finish growing around age 15, although this happens at different times for different girls. You might want to wear a brassiere (bra) for support at a certain point, especially if you exercise or play sports – or just feel more comfortable with one. 

 

3. Vaginal Discharge

 

Weird stains in your underwear? Don’t panic – that’s just vaginal discharge. 

 

Discharge is a clear or non-translucent fluid that your body produces to moisten and cleanse the vagina. Usually, it shows up right after puberty starts, and you will probably see white or yellow stains inside your underwear (P.S: That’s perfectly normal).

 

However, your vaginal discharge may also become white, clumpy, or it might smell strange or cause itchiness. In this case, you might have a vaginal yeast infection. If you observe that, consult with your doctor as soon as possible to get to the bottom of it.

 

4. Periods

 

sanitary pad with beats sprinkled on it  in pink background

 

Almost two years after the start of your puberty, you might observe some blood in your underwear. This could very well be menarche – your first period.

 

During this stage, the follicle-stimulating and luteinising hormones are having a regular effect on your ovaries. When your ovary releases an egg, you can ovulate. And if there is no sperm to fertilise the egg, you get your period (menstruation).

 

Abdominal cramping or pain during periods is also common. For many people, ibuprofen or naproxen are the best medicines to help with period cramps. However, if menstrual cramps are severe, talk to your paediatrician about other options.

 

Getting your first period can be challenging if you don’t know what to expect. Talk to your mum or another adult you trust about what to do before and after your first period. 

 

5. Weight Gain And Body Growth

 

One of the significant signs of puberty is that you are growing at a way faster rate than you did during childhood. What happens when you go through puberty is mainly centred on the growth of your sexual self. However, your entire body goes through major changes, especially your weight and height.

 

You might look curvier than before as the fat in your body shifts to new places. Usually, a lot of it will be deposited around your breasts, thighs, and hips. It might feel kind of awkward to be in this new, stretched-out body, but it will eventually be more proportional, and you will go back to feeling like yourself again.

 

6. Skin And Hair Changes

 

Possibly, the worst part of puberty is breakouts!

 

During puberty, hormones make your sweat and sebaceous glands more active. And as your pores become clogged with excess oil (sebum), your skin might break out. 

 

The most common places for acne to appear are on your:

 

  • face
  • back
  • and sometimes, chest

 

Establish a good skincare routine and use an acne-fighting treatment if you happen to get breakouts. Look for ingredients like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid, both of which are OGs for fighting acne.

 

Summing Up

 

Playful happy teenage girls taking a selfiePlayful happy teenage girls taking a selfie

 

For girls, puberty usually ends around 15, when all the secondary sex characteristics have developed. However, every person develops differently and at their own pace, so don’t get freaked out! 

 

Remember, there is no wrong way to go through puberty. So, however it happens, you are all good and on your way to becoming an adult. 🙂

 

How To Get Rid Of Blackheads

How To Get Rid Of Blackheads

 

While all sorts of pimples are no fun, blackheads can be the most annoying to deal with. They are abundant, challenging to hide, and just keep coming back. Though blackheads are more likely to appear on people with oily or acne-prone skin, they may appear in any person, no matter what type of skin they have. 

 

Read on to find out more about blackheads and some of the most effective ways to get rid of them.

 

What Exactly Are Blackheads?

 

Blackheads, medically known as open comedones, are tiny bumps that form on your skin due to clogged hair follicles. These small bumps or pores are filled with oil or sebum, debris, and dead skin cells. The reason they are called “blackheads” is because of their dark or black appearance.

 

Although blackheads are a mild type of acne that usually appear on the face, they can also form on the following body parts: 

 

  • Chest
  • Back
  • Neck
  • Shoulders
  • Arms

 

P.S: Blackheads on the nose are especially common.

 

What Causes Blackheads?

 

Blackheads form when a hair follicle (or pore) becomes clogged or plugged with dead skin cells and sebum. Generally, sebum helps protect your skin and keeps it soft and supple. But if the excess amount of oil and dead skin cells accumulate in a pore, it can form a bump. 

 

If the skin above the bump opens, the air exposure causes the clog to look black, thus forming a blackhead. However, when the skin over the bump remains closed, it produces a whitehead.

 

There are a few but significant factors that may make you more prone to develop blackheads and acne, including:

 

  • Excessive production of an oily substance called sebum
  • Accumulation of the bacteria Propionibacterium acnes and dead skin cells on your skin
  • Hormonal changes, which may cause the excessive production of oil within the skin, such as during puberty, menstruation (period acne), and when taking oral contraceptives.

 

Proven And Effective Practices To Remove Blackheads

 

woman cleansing her face

 

When you detect a blackhead on your skin, you may find it tempting to push or pinch the black clog or plug it out. However, this may damage the skin and leave a scar. 

 

Following are some of the proven practices to get rid of blackheads. 

 

1. Reconsider Your Face Washing Routine

 

Cleansing your face may seem like a bit of basic advice, but it can go a long way to help prevent dirt and excess oil from accumulating in your pores. 

 

Washing your face is one of the essential steps in your skin-care routine for a good reason. Cleansing your skin regularly will help remove any excess oil, dead skin cells, dirt, bacteria, or makeup that’s dwelling on your face.

 

For many people, washing their face twice a day is suitable. But for some people, especially dry or sensitive skin, washing their face with a cleanser once a day is the right move.

 

Another important thing is to ensure that the cleanser you use is non-comedogenic, which means it won’t clog your pores. Also, try not to over-cleanse – it may strip the oil from your skin, causing the skin to secrete more oil. 

 

Excess sweat can also combine with bacteria, dirt, and dead skin cells to plug your pores, possibly resulting in blackheads. So it’s crucial to wash your face after a workout or any activity that causes excessive sweating.

 

2. Exfoliate Your Face

 

If cleansing regularly is not enough to remove all the dead skin cells and dirt that can clog your pores, you may need to incorporate some exfoliation into your routine. And the good news? There are many options to choose from!

 

Regular exfoliation may help remove excess dead skin cells, dirt, and sebum that can cause clogged pores. It can also help in mildly removing existing blackheads.

 

However, instead of using harsh scrubs, you must choose exfoliants that contain alpha and beta hydroxy acids (BHAs and AHAs and BHAs). These acids help gently remove dead skin cells and allow the penetration of other products into the skin in a more effective way. 

 

For most people, exfoliating their face just once or twice a week is plenty. If your skin is oily or not too sensitive, a physical exfoliant may be an excellent option for you.

 

3. Try An Over-The-Counter Retinoid Product

 

Retinoids also help improve blackheads and severe acne cases by unclogging pores. It may also enhance the effectiveness of other over-the-counter products by allowing them to enter into the pores.

 

Search for over-the-counter products containing salicylic acid to get rid of blackheads. Salicylic acid helps remove blackheads by breaking down excess oil and dead skin cells. Choose your daily cleanser that contains salicylic acid. You may want to use it once a day, but when you feel like your skin has adjusted to it, you can start using it twice a day.  

 

Note: Some people develop an allergic reaction when using non-prescription acne products. So if you plan to use a non-prescription acne product for the first time and are worried about having a possible allergic reaction, it is recommended to see a dermatologist.

 

4. Use A Clay Or Charcoal Mask Occasionally

 

woman using charcoal mask

 

Clay masks help eliminate excess dirt and oil from the skin, as well as loosening and unblocking clogged pores. Sulfur is also present in some clay masks, which helps clear up blackheads by breaking down dead skin cells.

 

Just like a clay mask, a charcoal mask also helps remove dead skin cells, oil, and other kinds of impurities from the pores.

 

However, make sure to use these products with care (i.e. use them just once a week) and apply moisturiser after using them because they can dry the skin out.

 

5. Use Pore Strips

 

Pore strips are like a Band-Aid, used to rip away dead skin cells and dirt. They temporarily remove the external skin layer along with the dirt and oil that form blackheads.

 

6. Say No To Popping Blackheads!

 

Want to learn the truth? 

 

Picking or popping blackheads does not necessarily make them go away. In fact, popping them can make things worse, as they can spread bacteria all around the skin. Also, popping acne or blackheads too often can cause long-term scarring.

 

Summing Up

 

As mentioned above, there are plenty of ways to eliminate blackheads. You may also prevent the emergence of blackheads by removing makeup before sleeping, using oil-free cosmetic products, and using a limited number of products on your face at a time.

 

If you still observe pre-existing or new blackheads after 6-12 weeks, visit a dermatologist- they can extract blackheads using professional tools.

 

Hormonal Acne: Causes, Types, Treatments, And Prevention

Hormonal Acne: Causes, Types, Treatments, And Prevention

Just imagine.


You have been preparing for a long-awaited special event like your own wedding, or suppose you’re going to a professional event as a speaker, and you really have to put a great impression on others. Plus, that event would have a photoshoot too!


And right on the event day, when you are just a few hours away from the main show. You sit in front of the mirror to prepare yourself for it, but before you could even start anything, you see acne on your face. Horrible, isn’t it?


The pesky and unpleasant acne not only destroys your appearance but also takes away your confidence to represent yourself in public. Most importantly, it is connected to your health. So, it is highly recommended to take care of it as soon as possible.


Luckily, we got helpful information about hormonal acne, its types, causes, and effective ways to control them just right here in this article!


So let’s look into details:


What Is Hormonal Acne?


Hormonal acne refers to breakouts due to hormone fluctuations, particularly a rise in androgens such as testosterone. 


Although it usually affects teenagers during puberty, hormonal acne may happen at any stage of an adult’s life. Besides that, hormonal imbalances may lead to acne in adults who have underlying medical conditions.


Does Hormonal Acne Have Something To Do With Hormones?


Yes! 


There are two types of hormones that play an essential role in either clearing your skin or messing it up with acne on your skin. They are:




Both hormones have to work together on your skin and maintain their balances to make your skin clean, clear, and acne-free. As Dr Talakoub states:


“Most commonly, as we age, our estrogen goes down, and progesterone increases.”


Also,


If androgens increase to abnormally high levels, or estrogen decreases to abnormally low levels, it can cause an imbalance in hormone levels – resulting in hormonal acne breakout on your face.


Types Of Hormonal Acne


woman finding acne with magnifier illustration

During puberty, hormonal acne usually appears on the T-zone, i.e. chin, nose, and forehead. However, hormonal acne in adults may start on the lower face area, i.e. lower cheeks and jawline. 


Acne appears as Comedones, which are of two types — open comedones (blackheads) and closed comedones (whiteheads). 


It may rupture the follicle wall when it is picked or touched, causing it to spread bacteria (Propionibacterium Acnes) on that skin area and making the skin inflammable for hormonal acne.


Acne may also appear as:


  • Pustules: Small and red pus-filled pimples.
  • Papules: Small, inflamed, red bumps from infection of the hair follicles.
  • Nodules: It is similar to papules but larger in diameter.
  • Cysts: Large lumps beneath the skin that contain pus.

Causes Of Hormonal Acne


There can be a recurrence of the hormonal acne appearing in the T-zone due to the following:




While other factors like the use of drugs, poor diet, tobacco, stress, and diseases in the endocrine system of your body can also fluctuate the hormones, leading to hormonal acne.


Measure The Level Of My Hormonal Acne – All By Yourself!


Dermatologists have created an easy-to-use grading system known as the Global Acne Grading System (GAGS). You can use it to assess the severity of your acne’s level easily. At first, you’ll need to calculate the local acne score then go for the global score. 


Let’s see the GAGS along with a simple example:


Global Acne Grading System (GAGS)

Formula To Calculate The Local Score = Location Factor × Severe Lesion Grade At Location

Location Factor

Severe Lesion Grade At Location

Nose = 1

Chin = 1

Forehead = 2

Right cheek = 2

Left cheek = 2

Chest and upper back = 3

Comedone = 1

Papule = 2

Pustule = 3

Nodule = 4

Acne Severity Levels

Mild: 1–18;      Moderate: 19–30;      Severe: 31–38;      Very Severe: More than 39

Example

If you have papules on your nose while comedones on the forehead then the global score is: (1 × 2) + (2 × 1) = 4. So, the GAGS grade is Mild level hormonal acne.


How Can I Treat Hormonal Acne?


First, you have to use GAGS to figure out the level of your hormonal acne then you can look into the following treatments.


Under Mild Level Grading (Natural Remedies To Treat Mild Level Hormonal Acne)

  • Tea Tree Oil – Decreases inflammation on the skin.
  • Alpha Hydroxy Acid – Remove excess dead skin cells that clog pores.
  • Green Tea – Decreases inflammation in your body.

Over Mild Level Grading (Must Consult With Expert Health Care Provider)

  • Oral Contraceptives – Normalise testosterone production.
  • Anti-Androgen Drugs – Reduce excessive androgen production.
  • Retinoids – Topical retinoids to treat mild hormonal acne using derivatives of vitamin A.

However, if your GAGS grades for your acne is over the mild level, then you MUST consult with a professional dermatologist in order to avoid any mishaps with your face skin.


Useful Tips To Avoid Hormonal Acne


woman taking care of her skin

These self-care tips may help you clear acne or keep it from getting worse: 


  • Wash your face gently twice a day after heavy sweating.
  • Use mild cleansers or soaps and lukewarm water.
  • Use non-comedogenic makeup.
  • Don’t use harsh scrubs or exfoliating products.
  • Don’t touch, pick, or scratch your pimples.
  • Avoid environments that may cause too much sweating. 
  • Avoid excessive watch or scrub as it may worsen your skin’s oil conditions.

Keep in mind that excessive washing and scrubbing can worsen acne, as it may remove too much oil from your skin and cause irritation. In return, your skin may secrete more oil, worsening acne. 


Conclusion


Knowing about hormonal acne and controlling them is essential for you to maintain healthy skin. There are various hormonal acne types that you can measure using GAGS and treat accordingly.


Also, based on your acne severity level, there are tons of ways to control hormonal acne – using either medicines or natural remedies. However, you should regulate your hormones and follow the tips to avoid hormonal acne. It’ll help you to keep your face skin healthy and acne-free!