What is Acne?
Acne is a chronic, inflammatory skin condition that causes spots and pimples, especially on the face, shoulders, back, neck, chest, and upper arms.
Whiteheads, blackheads, pimples, cysts, and nodules are all types of acne.
- 1. Whiteheads (closed plugged pores)
2. Blackheads (open plugged pores)
3. Small red, tender bumps (papules)
4. Pimples (pustules), which are papules with pus at their tips
5. Large, solid, painful lumps beneath the surface of the skin (nodules)
6. Painful, pus-filled lumps beneath the surface of the skin (cystic lesions)
- Human skin has pores that connect to oil glands under the skin. Follicles connect the glands to the pores. Follicles are small sacs that produce and secrete liquid.
- follicles to the surface of the skin. A small hair grows through the follicle out of the skin.
- Pimples grow when these follicles get blocked, and oil builds up under the skin.
- Skin cells, sebum, and hair can clump together into a plug. This plug gets infected with bacteria, and swelling results.
- A pimple starts to develop when the plug begins to break down.
- Excess activity of a type of hormone (androgens)
- Certain medications-: Examples include drugs containing corticosteroids, testosterone or lithium.
- Diet-: Studies indicate that certain dietary factors, including skim milk and carbohydrate-rich foods — such as bread, bagels and chips — may worsen acne. Chocolate has long been suspected of making acne worse.
- Stress can make acne worse.
Treatment-: (Home Remedies)
1. Diet: It is unclear what role diet plays in worsening acne. Scientists have found that people who consume a diet that offers a good supply of vitamins A and E and of zinc may have a lower risk of severe acne.
2. Tea-tree oil: Results of a study of 60 patients published in the Indian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology, and Leprology suggested that 5-percent tea-tree oil may help treat mild to moderate acne.
3. Moisturizers: These can soothe the skin, especially in people who are using acne treatment such as isotretinoin, say researchers. Moisturizers containing Aloevera at a concentration of at least 10% percent have a soothing and possibly anti-inflammatory effect.
4. Good Sleep and Stress -free atmosphere.
Possible Medical Help – (Treatment)
If Mild acne?
A variety of steroidal and non-steroidal creams and gels are available to treat acne, and many are effective.
Mild acne can be treated with over-the-counter (OTC) medications, such as gels, soaps, pads, creams, and lotions, that are applied to the skin.
Creams and lotions are best for sensitive skin. Alcohol-based gels dry the skin and are better for oily skin. For best suggestion consult your nearby Licenced Pharmacy.
- OTC acne remedies may contain the following active ingredients:
• Resorcinol: helps break down blackheads and whiteheads
• Benzoyl peroxide: kills bacteria, accelerates the replacement of skin, and slows the production of sebum
• Salicylic acid: assists the breakdown of blackheads and whiteheads and helps reduce inflammation and swelling
• Sulfur: exactly how this works is unknown
• Retin-A: helps unblock pores through cell turnover
• Azelaic acid: strengthens cells that line the follicles, stops sebum eruptions, and reduces bacterial growth. There is cream for acne, but other forms are used for rosacea.
- It is advisable to start with the lowest strengths, as some preparations can cause skin irritation, redness, or burning on first use.
- These side effects normally subside after continued use.
If not, see a doctor.
Treating moderate to severe Acne-
- A skin specialist, or dermatologist, can treat more severe cases.
- They may prescribe a gel or cream similar to OTC medications but stronger, or an oral or topical antibiotic.
Skin Expert may Recommend –
* Certain Diet change
* Strict Skin cleansing regime
* Antibiotics/ Lotions- Prescribed one only
* Salicylic Acid Peel Treatment at Skin Clinic
* Glycolic Acid Peel Treatment at Skin Clinic
*Skin Mask/ Mud Pack- Soothing hydration gels etc
* Acne Spot corrector
* Advance Laser Treatment for severe acne cases/ uneven skins, dark spots and worse acne scares conditions
Your hormones, lifestyle, stress, heredity is what triggers acne and hence it is essential that you visit an expert dermatologist who will diagnose the right cause of your acne and prescribe the right treatment for best results.
It is not just acne, there are other problems associated with it like pigmentation and scars.
Even when acne is healed, it may leave behind ugly marks and scars. This happens when the skin does not heal properly leading to depressions or marks.
Dark spots left behind after the acne heals is called
Post-inflammatory-hyperpigmentation (PIH) and is a very common side-effect. It is caused due to increase in pigment production under your skin.
These can be usually treated using chemical peels or advanced lasers which are generally safe. If you are suffering from acne, you should immediately seek professional help as acne can lead to permanent scarring, which might hide your skin’s beauty.
Source-: Internet, Medical Journals