More than half of Brits with skin condition feel judged by others

By Becky Bargh | Published: 19-Jul-2021

Findings also show around 80% of customers believe appearance is more important than wellbeing

More than half of people suffering from a skin disease feel judged by others because of it, a new study has found.

The research, collated by the British Skin Foundation, noted that around 26% of Brits are embarrassed by their disease and one third said that their skin condition affects their mental health.

Some 20% also said they are unhappy with their skin, and 18% do not like their general appearance.

But despite their mental wellness being impacted, 83% said their appearance is more important than their general wellbeing.

“It’s clear from the results of our latest survey that skin and appearance play a huge part in our mental health and happiness,” said Matthew Patey, CEO of the British Skin Foundation.

“Whilst the skin is the body’s largest organ, most people underestimate its importance, dismissing skin issues as simply cosmetic.

“They wouldn’t downplay disease concerning other organs in the body so easily.”

Of those surveyed, 92% said they would welcome more research into all types of skin diseases, including skin cancer, which is in the top 20 most common cancers in the UK.

But British Skin Foundation expert, Andrew Thompson, warned that consumers with skin care conditions can be more susceptible to psychological distress, which should not be ignored.

“We know from a multitude of studies conducted by myself and other researchers working in this area, that skin disease is associated with higher risk of experiencing psychological distress,” he explains.

“Whilst there may be both complicated physiological and psychological reasons why skin conditions are linked to feelings of anxiety and depression, the good news is that psychological treatment can help and consequently it’s important to seek help as soon as symptoms of depression or anxiety are noticed.”

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