DR. NEWELL'S JOURNEY WITH SKIN HEALTH & ACNE
People don’t often realize how much the health and appearance of your skin can impact the quality of your life. Unfortunately, the health of our largest organ is too often classified as simply “cosmetic” when in reality it is a reflection of our internal and overall health. And those with skin concerns, like skin health acne, know how much it affects mental health, confidence, self-worth and how we interact with the world.
I love helping women (and men) restore their skin to health and regain the confidence to truly live their lives to the fullest. And even more personally, I love helping people restore their skin to health because I’ve been there myself and I know that feeling.
MY SKIN HEALTH ORIGIN STORY
In high school, I experienced pretty classic teenage acne, some pustules and papules on the T-zone that wasn’t really that terrible retrospectively, but everyone seemed to have an opinion about how to “fix it.” You probably know what I mean – magazines were full of articles about how to hide a zit or clear your skin. Meanwhile family members were there with unsolicited advice and comments like “you’d be so pretty if…” And doctors dismissed it as “just a phase” (in other words, “suck it up.”)
As an already shy teen, this definitely didn’t help. I tried just about every fad, trend and topical to try to clear my skin, more often than not leaving it more inflamed and irritated than it was before. Eventually, I was prescribed The Pill to “cure” my acne and while it helped a little, my acne never fully resolved. I still found myself trying every new product hoping to find that miracle that they all promised.
AS MY ACNE GOT WORSE...
In undergrad my skin got worse and, in response, so did my confidence. I now blame stress, lack of sleep, and not eating well. Not even the pill seemed to be helping me at this point. Again, I searched for a solution in the form of harsh topical treatments to no avail and finally realized that other things needed to change in my lifestyle if I expected my skin to improve – this realization, eventually led me to Naturopathic College.
While in Naturopathic College, I took the leap and discontinued the pill – not only wasn’t it keeping my skin clear, but I was struggling with mood changes and volatility as well as my energy levels and highly suspected it was contributing. Once I stopped the pill, the improvement in my mood and energy were almost immediate, but a few months in my skin took a turn for the worse.
My acne flared up significantly and was no longer those papules and pustules of my teen years but deep painful cysts on my neck, jaw and temples. Working with what I was learning as a Naturopath and what I had learned from experience and research before I was able to identify the underlying causes of this flare up and resolve it, but it took time to get my skin to a place where I could confidently go out without makeup.
MY RELATIONSHIP WITH SKIN HEALTH NOW
Now I love supporting people on their own skin health journey, knowing that it does take time and effort but that there is hope – even after trying what feels like absolutely everything to no avail. You just need the right steps, in the right sequence for your unique needs and the right supportive team to help you every step of the way.