For the frst time, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended mental health support for people severely afected by their acne.

Acne afects 95% of people in England at some point in their lives. Symptoms can range from mild to severe, and are caused when hair follicles become blocked.

While most individuals experience acne in their teens and early 20s, around 3% of the population have acne past the age of 35. Evidence suggests that any form of acne can cause a person to experience psychological distress. In some cases this can be a part of, or contribute to, a mental health disorder.

NICE's new recommendations include the use of pharmacological and photodynamic therapies which will help the majority of people with the condition.

They also emphasise the importance of supporting the mental health of individuals who are experiencing signifcant psychological distress as a result. Clinicians are advised to consider referral to mental health services where appropriate, especially in those with a current or past history of severe depression or anxiety, body dysmorphic disorder, suicidal ideation and self-harm.