Research in Clinical Dermatology

All submissions of the EM system will be redirected to Online Manuscript Submission System. Authors are requested to submit articles directly to Online Manuscript Submission System of respective journal.
Reach Us +441518081136

Mini Review - Research in Clinical Dermatology (2023) Volume 6, Issue 3

The relationship between stress and inflammatory skin conditions

Franklin Nieman *

UNC Chapel Hill School of Medicine, Department of Dermatology, Chapel Hill, NC, United States

*Corresponding Author:
Franklin Nieman
Department of Dermatology
UNC Chapel Hill School of Medicine
Chapel Hill, NC, United States
E-mail: E-mail:

Received: 22-Apr -2023, Manuscript No. AARCD-23-104725; Editor assigned: 24-Apr -2023, PreQC No. AARCD-23-104725 (PQ); Reviewed: 08-May -2023, QC No. AARCD-23-104725; Revised: 11-May -2023, Manuscript No. AARCD-23-104725 (R); Published: 19-May -2023, DOI: 10.4725/aarcd-6.3.148

Citation: Nieman F. The relationship between stress and inflammatory skin conditions. Res Clin Dermatol. 2023;6(3):148

Visit for more related articles at Research in Clinical Dermatology


Inflammatory skin conditions, such as psoriasis, eczema, and acne, are prevalent worldwide and can significantly impact an individual's quality of life. While the exact causes of these conditions are multifactorial, emerging research suggests a strong link between stress and the onset or exacerbation of inflammatory skin conditions. This article explores the intricate relationship between stress and inflammatory skin conditions, shedding light on the underlying mechanisms and potential management strategies. Stress is a complex physiological response triggered by various psychological and environmental factors. When an individual experiences stress, the body releases stress hormones, including cortisol, which is involved in the regulation of the immune system and inflammatory responses. Elevated cortisol levels can disrupt the immune system's balance, leading to increased inflammation in the body, including the skin [1].

Furthermore, stress can impair the skin's barrier function, making it more susceptible to environmental irritants and allergens. This compromised barrier function can contribute to the development or worsening of inflammatory skin conditions. Studies have shown that individuals with high stress levels are more likely to experience flare-ups and prolonged episodes of conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, and acne.The field of psychoneuroimmunology investigates the complex interactions between the mind, the nervous system, and the immune system. It provides valuable insights into the mechanisms underlying the relationship between stress and inflammatory skin conditions. Chronic stress can dysregulate the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, resulting in the release of stress hormones, including cortisol. These hormones can influence immune cell activity, trigger inflammatory responses, and disrupt the skin's natural protective mechanisms [2].

Moreover, stress can also affect neuropeptides, small protein like molecules that act as signaling molecules in the skin. Neuropeptides, such as substance P, play a crucial role in the regulation of inflammation and skin barrier function. Stress induced alterations in neuropeptide levels can contribute to increased inflammation and compromised skin barrier function, exacerbating inflammatory skin conditions. Recognizing the link between stress and inflammatory skin conditions opens the door to potential management strategies that target both aspects. Here are some approaches that individuals with inflammatory skin conditions can consider [3].

Stress Reduction Techniques: Engaging in stress-reducing activities, such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, or yoga, can help lower stress levels and promote overall well-being.Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT): CBT is a psychotherapeutic approach that aims to modify negative thought patterns and behaviors associated with stress. CBT techniques can assist individuals in coping with stress and reducing its impact on their skin [4].

Reguar Exercise: Physical activity has been shown to reduce stress and promote the release of endorphins, which are known to improve mood. Incorporating regular exercise into one's routine can have a positive impact on both mental well-being and skin health.Building a strong support system can help individuals manage stress more effectively. Friends, family, or support groups provide a network of understanding individuals who can offer emotional support during challenging times.Chronic stress can suppress the immune system, making individuals more susceptible to infections and inflammatory conditions. In the context of skin health, this can lead to increased vulnerability to skin infections and delayed wound healing [ [5].


Understanding the relationship between stress and inflammatory skin conditions is crucial for both healthcare providers and individuals with these conditions. While more research is needed to elucidate the precise mechanisms involved, current evidence suggests that stress can contribute to the onset and exacerbation of inflammatory skin conditions through various pathways. By addressing stress management techniques and incorporating them into treatment plans, individuals can potentially improve their overall skin health and well-being.


  1. Jowett S, Ryan T. Skin disease and handicap: an analysis of the impact of skin conditions. Soc sci med. 1985;20(4):425-9.
  2. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  3. Tunzi M, Gray GR. Common skin conditions during pregnancy. Am Fam Physician. 2007 ;75(2):211-8.
  4. Indexed at, Google Scholar,

  5. Andrews MD. Cryosurgery for common skin conditions. Am Fam Physician. 2004 ;69(10):2365-72.
  6. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  7. Wagener FA, Carels CE, Lundvig DM. Targeting the redox balance in inflammatory skin conditions. Int J Mol Sci. 2013 ;14(5):9126-67.
  8. Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

  9. Lavda AC, Webb TL, Thompson AR. A meta?analysis of the effectiveness of psychological interventions for adults with skin conditions. Br J Dermatol. 2012;167(5):970-9.

Indexed at, Google Scholar, Cross Ref

Get the App