Acne is linked with a significantly increased risk of depression, says a new study. Anyone who’s ever had a skin issue knows that it’s more than skin deep — serious skin conditions and acne alike can have both mental and emotional effects. “There is an emotional connection to things you see on your skin,” Doris Day, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City and author of Beyond Beautiful, tells Allure. “Appearance is anything but superficial.”
In a study published earlier this week in the British Journal of Dermatology, researchers found data to back up that claim after analyzing patient records between the years 1986 and 2012 from a large primary care database in the United Kingdom. They found a compelling connection. “In the first year following an acne diagnosis, we were most surprised to find that these patients have a 63 percent increased risk of developing depression compared to patients who did not have acne,” Isabelle Vallerand, lead author on the study, tells Allure.