A recent study in the British Medical Journal found that acne itself can cause depression, not the medications used to treat the condition.
As if being a teenager wasn’t hard enough.
Self-Esteem and acne
The sad news is that the presence of teen acne actually makes depression worse — increasing a teen’s chances of committing suicide.
“Your skin is what you present to the world, and unfortunately we all aim for that airbrushed perfection that’s on the covers of the magazines,” Dr. Diane Walder, clinical assistant professor of dermatology at the University of Miami, told CNN.
How parents can help
Many parents feel helpless during this time — but there is something you can do to help your acne-suffering teen. You best bet is to find a good dermatologist that will work with your child to help his acne. Several prescription-only medications — like Accutane — are available to help fight serious acne.
The good news? These acne medications aren’t linked to depression and suicide risk like once thought.
The British Medical Journal found that teens‘ acne-based depression dissipated in their older teen years, especially after they’ve graduated.
“Even if the acne remains, we’ll see a shift when they finish high school because whether they go to college or get a job, they start to redefine themselves in ways that boost their self-esteem,” Dr. Walder said.
It’s never fun, but at least there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.