Is stress written all over your face? #CheckYourself for early signs of declining mental health

As we head into winter, with yet more COVID warnings on the horizon; skincare, aesthetics and wellness expert Dr Yusra urges consumers to check their faces for early signs of a decline in their mental health.

Dr Yusra, author of the newly released Beautified Britain Index: The Skin Report which found there was a 3,100% increase in Google searches for “skin anxiety” during the pandemic*, says that the link between mental health and skin has never been more apparent.

“Chronic stress, anxiety and psychological distress often present first on the skin, even before we might realise we are suffering. Winter is a notoriously challenging time for mental health and, after a couple of very difficult years for us all, we need to be more mindful than ever of our mental health.” says Dr Yusra.

“In the same way that you regularly #CheckYourself for cancerous lumps and bumps, it is important to do so for mental wellbeing. When we become stressed, anxious and depressed, we can easily become stuck in a vicious cycle, so it is vital to #CheckYourself for mental health, to stay on top of any potential issues.”

#CheckYourself – here’s Dr Yusra’s quick and easy ‘FACE’ four point check, as illustrated in the attached video.

● Frowns and furrows – do you have frown lines and a furrowed brow, even at rest? ‘Resting Stress Face’ could be the first sign that you’re strained.

● Atrophy – a reduction in volumes in the face such as temple hollows, flattened cheeks and a gaunt appearance is known as ‘lipoatrophy’ of the fat pads and can be secondary to stress.

● Changes – Look out for sudden or significant changes such as blotchy, sensitised skin or acne breakouts. All of these could be linked to stress.

● Eyes – twitching eyes and increased blinking could be a sign that you’re spending too much time on screens. Dark circles and bags under the eyes can denote too little quality sleep or disrupted sleep patterns.

Dr Yusra Clinic is one of the only clinics in the country to combine psychological wellness with aesthetics and employ a clinical psychologist to provide a holistic health service and has a psychiatrist on the board of clinical directors.