Acne is a condition of the skin that causes zits or pimples. It includes blackheads, whiteheads, inflamed skin patches like cysts and reddish skin. It is a disorder of the hair follicles of the chest, face and back that affects all individuals at the time of puberty. Though, it is not caused due to bacteria, however bacteria plays a vital role in its development. It is very common for women to have acne during their middle and late twenty’s. One can do many things to treat the occurrence of acne by using products that are available at the cosmetic counter or drugstore. These do not need a medical prescription. But, for severe cases, it is mandatory to see the doctor for other treatment alternatives.
Symptoms of Acne
Acne usually makes its appearance on the shoulders and face; however, it is also seen on the arms, trunk, legs and buttocks. Some common symptoms of acne include cysts, black heads, papules, crusting of skin bumps, scarring of the skin, pustules, white heads, and redness around skin eruptions.
Causes of Acne
contrary to the well known legend, chocolates and French fries are not responsible for causing acne. The primary culprits to cause acne are:
- Hormones – The acne problems usually peak up in puberty, when there are several bodily and hormonal changes in individuals. The androgen hormone produced during puberty enlarges the sebaceous gland. But, if you are suffering from acne, the sebaceous glands are over-stimulated and this goes on continuing.
- Extra sebum – Over stimulation of the sebaceous glands by the androgens results in extra sebum. This presence of extra sebum increases the possibilities of clogging and results into acne.
- Follicle fallout – The overactive sebaceous glands shed out very rapidly. It gets mixed with extra sebum and dead skin cells create a plug in follicles, thus preventing the skin from completing its natural renewal process. This plug motivates acne bacteria growth.
- Bacteria – when a follicle is plugged, the Propionibacterium acnes start multiplying rapidly. This creates a chemical reaction and we experience inflammation in the surrounding skin and the follicles.
Diagnosis of Acne
To diagnose acne, the dermatologist first checks the skin of the patient in order to assure that you have acne. There are other skin disorders that may appear like acne. If you do have acne, then the dermatologist will first grade the acne. There are four grades of acne starting from grade 1 to grade 4. Grade 1 acne is mild acne and grade 4 is severe one. Here, the skin has many nodules, pustules, and cysts. There are many whiteheads and blackheads. There are breakouts and pronounced inflammation that possibly extends to other body parts other than the face. Then he notes what types of acne is seen on the patient’s skin.
Tips to avoid acne
If you find out that you have acne or wish to avoid the occurrence of acne in future; there are ways to get rid from it. The below given tips will help you to deal with acne effectively and get a healthy and clear skin.
- Always use natural and chemical free skin products to clean the skin pores and try to reduce the formation of new blemishes. Cleansing the face before going to bed everyday is the primary step towards acquiring healthy, spotless skin.
- Make use of clean cloth or towel to wash the face. The bacteria causing acne multiplies rapidly on damp surface and gets back into your skin, the next time when you use it.
- Try to keep the hairs and hands off your face as they contain excess oil and dirt that gets transferred to the face. This results into pore clogging and bacterial growth.
- Drink adequate water and consume a balanced diet that contains lots of fresh vegetables and fruits.
- Avoid picking. Picking at or pinching the blemishes results into excess oil transfer form one area to another and hence, results into deeper acne lesions.
- Acne on the back and shoulder can be treated by wearing clothes that do not allow the skin to breathe.
- Manage your stress levels effectively by having adequate sleep. Our skin needs enough rest to rebuild and repair.
- Women should avoid heavy makeup and oil based lotions.