Acne Linked to Suicidal Thinking to Teen
Researchers have discovered that acne linked to suicidal thinking as they discover that teens with severe acne may be related to the acne itself, and not acne medications. Although depression has been linked to acne medications such as Accutane, the Norwegian study suggests that serious mental disorders may be connected to acne itself.
Dr. Jon A. Halvorsen, of the University of Oslo, in Norway and lead author said, "There has been a lot of controversy about this, especially in the U.S.," He further stated "But depression and suicidal [thoughts] in acne reflects the burden of acne, rather than being a side effect of isotretinoin." Isotretinoin is the generic form of Accutane and is still available to patients, though Accutane was voluntarily pulled from the market in 2009.
The link is strong between Acne drugs and teen mental health issues
"There is a pretty strong and consistent association between acne and symptoms of depression or mental health problems," Halvorsen said. Acne affects about 80 percent of teenagers, with about one in five teens developing moderate to severe acne.
Acne, which is common in adolescents can effect them during important periods in their lives when social relationships change and when physical appearance is important for self-image and confidence. Teens with acne reported more difficulty at school, complained of fewer close friendships and had very few to no romantic relationships. This is the kind of social stress that can cause depression and suicidal thoughts.
Acne can have a profound effect on teens self-esteem as well. In fact, girls with acne were twice as likely to have suicidal thoughts, and boys with acne tripled their risk. Nearly one in five teenagers will suffer from serious acne at some point during adolescence.
"There is under-treatment of acne in teens, and this shows it's important not to delay seeking treatment," Halvorsen stated.