When your skin is free from blackheads, blemishes, and acne, you don’t give it a second look. However, when these nuisances show up, you’re running to your medicine cabinet to see what kinds of cleansers and lotions you have to make it all go away. After passing the teenage years, you thought that the unsightly annoyance would disappear, but it hasn’t. Research suggests that 80% of people between the ages of 11 and 30 have acne of some kind, so you’re not alone. You’re stressed out about the way you look, and nobody should have to feel that way.
Your skin is the biggest organ of your body. Its purpose is protecting your organs and bones, eliminating toxins through sweat, and keeping your body temperature regulated. So you can see, it’s pretty important to keep it healthy. It’s what keeps you who you are. Instead of watching your exterior fade into something unrecognizable, discover how seeing a chiropractor can benefit the look of your skin and bring it back to a beautifully smooth and soft state that you can be proud of.
What Causes Acne?
Several factors can contribute to the cause of your acne problems. The primary reason is the hair follicle being obstructed with dead skin cells, dirt, and oil. It can show up anywhere on the body including the face, neck, back, chest, and shoulders. There are other causes of acne appearing including:
- Over-the-counter and prescription medication
- Hormonal changes or imbalances
- Premenstrual side effect
- Birth control
- Illegal drugs
How Can a Chiropractor Help with Acne?
There are a plethora of traditional treatment options for acne like seeing a dermatologist, using topical medications, and making lifestyle changes that may be contributing to the problem. Most people don’t think about visiting a chiropractor to clear away acne, but it has been shown to be quite useful for people of all ages.
If your acne is being caused by an irregularity in your body’s functioning, that’s something that a chiropractor works on repairing. The body is run off of the central nervous system which is found in the spinal cord. When there are misalignments in the vertebrae, it can cause problems in other areas of the body. Qualified chiropractors can locate the problem and realign it to restore proper functioning from the inside out.
To be more specific, the T-9 through T-11 vertebrae of the thoracic spine is the area that has control over your adrenals, kidneys, ureters, and other hormones. When there is interference in this region, it can have a direct impact on the amount of acne that a person gets. Chiropractors know how to check this area and realign it through manual adjustments of the spine. Then, the functioning between the central nervous system, and the body is restored and skin clarity returns. When visiting a chiropractor, or if you are still considering going to see one, be sure to ask them if they have any knowledge or experience in skin and it’s relation to the condition of your spine.
Acne Myths Debunked
Several reasons why acne appears have been mentioned, but you’ve probably heard some others. Not everything that people think about the formation of pimples on your skin is necessarily true. Take a look at these myths and understand why they aren’t the reason behind your blemishes:
False: Acne can develop from using moisturizer.
True: When your skin isn’t properly moisturized, your body is going to produce more oils naturally that will clog up your pores. Wearing a light moisturizer every day will prevent that oil from being generated at all so you will have less acne.
False: Dirty skin is the reason behind acne.
True: Two things have to happen for acne to form on your skin. First of all, the hair follicles aren’t shedding the dead skin cells as quickly as they should be. Secondly, the sebaceous glands are producing extra amounts of sebum. The two things conjoined make it the perfect environment for bacteria to grow. It could turn into blemishes, pimples, blackheads, or even large cysts, depending on how and what happens. Washing the skin too much can make the problem even worse.
False: Caffeine from chocolate and coffee can make acne worse.
(Photo via Good Free Photos)
True: Some foods can stimulate acne problems, but it isn’t caffeine. Refined carbohydrates and sugar cause more issues than chocolate or coffee because they increase your insulin levels. That means that your body is making more sebum, which is one of the two parts of acne forming. Anything that you would see on the high end of the glycemic index you should stay away from if acne is a concern.
How to Care for Your Skin Between Chiropractic Appointments
While visiting a chiropractor is going to help reduce the amount of acne you see when a misalignment in the spine is causing it, you can’t solely rely on that. You should also be taking care of your skin the right way at home. You can take various supplements and vitamins like Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, or Beta-carotene to help regulate your skin. That is something that you can discuss with your medical doctor or a qualified chiropractor.
Regardless of the problem behind your acne, there are things that you should implement in your daily life to ensure acne stays away including:
- Never pick, rub, or irritate a pimple or blackhead. It can cause spreading.
- Boost your endorphins by exercising regularly. It helps in flushing out the toxins through sweating.
- Consume dairy only in moderation. It is full of steroids and hormones that can cause imbalances in your own hormones which can cause breakouts.
- Drink at least eight to ten glasses of water each day.
- Include zinc in your diet by eating foods like sunflower seeds and shellfish.
- Stay away from sugar, soda, and processed foods.
- Use fingertips for washing your face and check to be sure your cleanser has sulfur in it.
- On particularly sweaty days, you can clean the skin between washing with a cotton ball and some witch hazel or another mild astringent.
- Use a hot steaming washcloth and chamomile tea to open your pores and calm any irritated skin. After five to ten minutes, rinse with cool water. You can also purchase facemasks made specifically for this reason.
- Limit the amount of makeup you wear as it clogs the pores.
You can discuss any concerns you have with your chiropractor. Not only can they adjust your back, but they can also advise you on eating, exercise, and an overall healthier lifestyle which will naturally decrease any problems that may cause acne.
This article was written by Dr. Brent Wells, D.C.
Dr. Brent Wells is a Juneau chiropractor and the founder of Better Health Chiropractic & Physical Rehab in Alaska. He is passionate about providing his patients with professional, compassionate, personalized treatment for overall better health and wellness.