You’re ready to head out for a good time, and before you leave, you take a look in the mirror and realize you’re in the middle of a massive acne outbreak. It’s a first-world problem, but is pretty harrowing nonetheless. What’s odd is despite being so common, there are many myths and misunderstandings about acne. Before you schedule a visit to anĀ acne dermatologist in San Diego, CA, here are a few things you might not be aware of.

1. It’s True What They Say about Chocolate

We know what you’re thinking: “Why couldn’t it be Brussels sprouts?” Sugar and dairy products can cause an increase in acne, so milk chocolate is the worst combination of both. If you’re going to indulge in chocolate, stick to dark chocolate with as little sugar as possible.

2. Pimples Feed off Stress

Stress has a lot of negative health effects, and acne is one of them. Studies show that students tend to have the worst flare-ups right around exam time. Find ways to relax. Take yoga, or meditate, and make sure you get plenty of sleep. Not only is rest good for your complexion, it’s good for your heart and peace of mind.

3. Please Don’t Tan Away the Pimples

While it’s true exposure to the sun can have very slight positive effects on your complexion, the dangers of sun exposure far outweigh the benefits. If you’re going to get enough sun to have any effect on your acne, that means you’re likely getting enough to increase the risks of skin cancer, and permanent skin damage in the form of increased wrinkling. Better to stay in and seek out laser skin resurfacing acne in San Diego, CA, than risk increased exposure to harmful UV rays.

4. Acne Is No Excuse for Skipping Your Workout

It may seem like sweat leads to the kind of oils on your skin that clogs pores and leads to nasty pimples, but that’s not the case. Studies have shown that there is no correlation between increased workout and acne outbreaks. So, resist that urge to lounge around and hit that treadmill!

5. Don’t Take the Frustration out on Your Face

We’ve all been there. Acne makes you feel dirty, so you want to scrub real hard to get rid of the dirt, oil, and pimples. This is a very bad idea. Too much scrubbing, and the use of harsh cleansers, can actually increase the risk of outbreaks. And, when all oils are removed from your skin, your body uses that as a signal to produce more oils. Just stick to the way your mom taught you: gently clean twice a day with a gentle non-soap cleanser, and finish with a light moisturizer.

There’s no need to panic. Simply cleaning and living healthily is all you need to diminish the effects of acne.