A European study reveals that young people suffering from severe acne have between two and three times more suicidal thoughts than those who do not suffer from this skin disease, which decreases self-esteem, causing social isolation, anxiety and depression.
Acne is related to psychological and social problems, which include anxiety and depression, social phobia and suicidal thoughts. 80% of adolescents have problems with acne, and although in most cases it is moderate acne, severe acne, which comes to disfigure the sufferer and causes social rejection, can cause depression and generate suicidal ideas in the patient.
This is clear from the data obtained in a study conducted by Norwegian researchers who interviewed almost 4,000 young people of 18 and 19 years, 14% of which had severe or important acne. The study, published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology, revealed that young women with severe acne had twice as many suicidal thoughts as those without acne or with mild acne. In the case of children with severe acne, the ideas of suicide tripled those of young people without acne.
In addition to suicidal ideas, these young people have other emotional and psychological problems such as social isolation, school failure and lack of romantic and sexual relationships.
On the other hand, a study carried out by the Karolinska Institute, of Sweden, and published in the 'British Medical Journal', has investigated the possible relationship between isotretinoin, a treatment to combat acne, and the increase in attempted suicides. for the patients who had taken it. They found that the highest risk of suicide occurred six months after the end of treatment. However, they could not demonstrate that the increased risk was related to the treatment and, according to the researchers, it is most likely that severe acne is responsible for the increase in the risk of suicide, which is why acne is already considered as a risk factor for suicide, regardless of whether or not the patient takes medication to fight it.
Acne is a highly prevalent disease that, in Spain, affects 8 out of 10 people, that is, 80% of Spaniards will suffer from acne at some point in their lives. Studies conducted in our country on the impact of this disorder indicate that 44% of those affected suffer from anxiety and 18% depression. In addition, acne is the culprit that many teenagers, out of embarrassment, do not leave their homes in their free time and have problems to become friends and relate to the opposite sex.