What is a Acne?
Acne is a common skin condition that is the result of clogged pores. If you don’t properly wash your skin, a build-up of sebum oil and dead skin cells will clog your pores. Acne can occur in several forms like pimples (red bumps), blackheads, whiteheads, blemishes and cystic acne. Cystic acne is known to be painful because they are larger, more solid pimples found deeper in the skin. Acne can be found on other areas of the body, like the neck, chest and back.
Acne is most commonly found in teens. But if you are an adult struggling with acne, that is very normal. Adult women are more likely to encounter acne than men due to hormonal changes like menstrual periods and pregnancy.
What causes acne?
When the dead skin cells do not reach the surface of your skin, they can connect with the sebum and become trapped inside your pores. Acne will occur if the bacteria that lives on the surface of your skin, known as p. acnes, also becomes trapped inside your pores. You will then develop red bumps because of inflammation and the creation of pus to fight the bacterial infection.
What are the symptoms of acne?
If you find blemishes on your skin in the form of blackheads, whiteheads, pimples (red bumps) and larger, red bumps known as cysts, then you have some form of acne. These different kinds of blemishes can be found on the face, neck, chest and back. You may also notice psychological symptoms of acne. Acne is an embarrassing condition for some, and has the potential to cause low self-esteem and depression.
How can acne be treated?
There are countless ways to treat and manage your acne. Acne can be treated with topical medications, oral medications, chemical peels, extraction treatments and/or laser treatments. Everyone’s skin is unique and that is why a thorough consultation with a doctor to determine a customized treatment plan for you is vital to protect and effectively treat your skin.
It is most important to regularly cleanse your skin with “non-comedogenic” products that will not clog your pores. It is also important not to pick, scratch or scrub your acne because it can worsen the condition by spreading the bacteria and could also cause scarring.
Topical treatments that contain benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid and retinol could be helpful for your acne, but it will take 4-8 weeks to see improvements. Oral antibiotics and oral contraceptives have also been clinically proven to clear-up acne. Laser technology also has positive effects on treating active acne and acne scarring.