Acne – Types, Causes And Treatments

Acne Vulgaris, commonly referred to as pimples, is an inflammatory disease of the skin. This condition is very common in puberty. As one reaches their early twenties, it either disappears or decreases. Acne begins because of the comedo, an enlarged hair follicle plugged with oil and bacteria. The comedo is invisible to the naked eye and is present beneath the surface of the skin. When it gets the right condition, it grows into an inflamed lesion. The oil produced from the skin helps bacteria to flourish within the swollen follicle.

Non-inflammatory acre are of two types – Closed comedo or white head, and Open comedo or black head. There are 4 types of inflammatory acne –

Papule – It is the mildest form that appears on the skin as a small, firm pink bump.

Pustule – They are small round lesions containing visible pus. They may appear red at the base and yellowish or whitish at the center.

Nodule or Cyst – Large and painful, they are pus-filled lesions lodged deep within the skin. The nodules may persist for weeks or months with the contents hardening into a deep cyst. Both nodules and cysts often leave deep scars.

Acne Conglobata – This severe bacterial infection develops mostly on the back, buttocks and chest.

The chief causes of acne are hormones like androgen, production of extra sebum, follicle fallout, bacteria and inflammation. For controlling acne, you can carry out the following steps –

– Avoid excessive washing of your skin. It can leave the healthy skin dry, thus irritating the acne prone areas. Over-washing may also stimulate extra oil production.

– Avoid alcohol products to tone your skin. Alcohol is a strong astringent that strips the top layer of the skin causing sebaceous glands to produce more oil.

– Do not squeeze or pick the acne with fingernails, pins or any other thing. It forces the bacteria deeper into the skin and often leaves a permanent acne scar.

– A wash is required after exercise. The heat and moisture trapped against the skin creates an ideal breeding ground for the spread of bacteria.

– Consume food rich in Vitamin A, Vitamin B-2, Vitamin B-3, Vitamin E and Zinc like eggs, nuts, liver, milk, fish and leafy green vegetables.

– Proper sleep and a life without stress and emotional anxiety can reduce acne.

– Wear little make-up while exercising. Avoid garments that are made exclusively with nylon.

Laser surgery is often used to reduce the scars left behind by acne. Treating acne with azelaic acid, salicylic acid, tropical retinoids and benzoyl peroxide is also common. A large number of people started trying herbal acne treatments over the traditional medications by using teas, oils and herbal creams.

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Step by Step Acne Skin Care

Acne prone skin is something that you have to carefully treat as the slightest mistake can cause an irritation or an allergic reaction that can exacerbate the condition rather than cure it.

Contrary to popular myth, acne is not caused by just dirt and grime on the skin. One can be the most hygienic but you can still develop acne. Perhaps one of the reasons why acne is so hard to combat is the fact that it is caused by a lot of factors that all contribute to its development.

Acne actually starts off with unwanted oils on the skin that tend to clog the pores. These excess oils are produced by the body’s hormones. This is one of the reasons why there are people whose skin are not pimple-prone. The oil on the skin is the initial factor that contributes in the development of acne. Another factor is the shape of the pore, which restricts the flow of oil in the skin. When the pores are abnormally shaped, it tends to encase the oil all the more inside, leading to build up and eventually to acne eruptions.

Dead skin cells that line up the pores and the dirt in the skin also interact with the oil causing clogging, which exacerbates the condition. Another factor is the presence of the bacteria propionibacterium acnes, which actually thrives in an oily environment.

Although it was mentioned that acne is not necessarily caused by unhygienic ways, this is not a reason to clean the face. A clean face will of course lessen the risk of further eruptions. For most people, a gentle water soluble cleanser is recommended especially for people who have ultra sensitive skin that can be irritated by the smallest of things.

Another advantage of a water soluble cleanser is the fact that no trace will be kept after washing. Some soaps tend to remain on the face and will only clog the pores, thereby leading to skin eruptions.

The next step to taking care of the skin is to remove the excess oils. This can be achieved by using facial masks at night and rice papers during the day. One must be careful though as some chemicals and products may irritate the skin. Before you use anything on your skin, it is best that you consult your dermatologist.

Another step towards acne free skin is exfoliation. This is done to remove the dead skin cells in the pore lining as these contribute in the clogging. Another function that exfoliation provides is skin renewal, wherein the old skin will be replaced by a new one. Products that contain 1% to 2% beta hydroxy acid (BHA) or 8% alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) are often recommended by dermatologists.

As a rule of thumb, BHA is actually more effective than AHA especially in penetrating through the pores. However, there are some people who are either allergic to BHA or have too sensitive skins for the chemical, so AHA is the next in line that doctors recommend.

Disinfecting the skin and killing off the bacteria in the pores is another crucial step in acne skin care. Although there are a lot of products in the market, most if not all contain the ingredient Benzoyl Peroxide, which is proven to be the most effective in fighting the bacteria.

It’s All in the Cream

In a world where physical comeliness matters, it is only natural for people to find ways to maintain and protect their God-given potentials. Since not everyone is endowed with physical beauty based on the standards of the majority, more and more people search endlessly for products and services that would give solution to their physical flaws.

One of the most common complaints of people when it comes to skin is having infected and irritated pimples or acne breakout. Identified by superficial skin eruptions, acne in adults as well as acne in teenagers can be upsetting and disfiguring aside when left untreated.

Today, the market offers a wide range of acne treatment and products to cure acne. Among the so many products available, acne creams are proven to be one of those quite effective in treating acne in different stages.

Buying Acne Creams

Buying and using acne creams is indeed a good option in combating the skin disorder. But, before you purchase acne creams, try to research first on how the formulation and content of these creams help cure the skin infection:

– According most dermatologists, acne creams are effective to treat acne because these are quickly absorbed by the skin.

– It is a good option to cure acne because it is made from natural substances gathered from reliable and effective sources.

– Quality acne creams can help you get rid of adult acne as well as teen acne while preventing possible acne scarring.

– It is proven that the natural substances found in acne creams are complex compounds that combine natural antibiotic peptides proven to fight acne infection within the skin follicles; bio-available allantoin & skin regenerating peptides to vanish dark marks, prevent and repair acne scars; glycolic acid that opens clogged pores and allows for the other ingredients to penetrate deeply into the skin follicles; vitamins that stop the progress of inflammation; collagen and elastin which help restore the natural moisturizing capacity of a healthy skin.

– Most medical experts agree that acne creams work for most people that have mild acne. It is also proven to work for those who have developed severe acne infection when it is used simultaneously with oral antibiotics or retinoids/accutane to detoxify your skin.

– Acne creams that are applied twice a day are known to speed up the process of clearing the skin’s sebaceous glands of debris. This will get rid of acne bacteria within the skin follicles that eventually lead to the clearance of acne marks and repair acne scarring.

You have to bear in mind that before you buy acne creams, you have to make sure that they are hypoallergenic and can be used by children or pregnant women without enduring any pain or discomfort by checking the label. Knowing the ingredients used in the product will ensure that the acne cream has balanced formulation to deliver effective results. It will also pay to do a little research about the acne creams available in the market today because it will determine which is the best and suitable for your skin type.

After the initial application of the acne cream you bought, observe how your skin reacts to the product. Take note of the visible changes you notice to prevent possible side effects. If you think that the acne cream does not work on your skin after the prescribed length of time to be taken, stop using the product to avoid further damage on your skin.

Acne: 10 Most Common Myths

What we think we know about acne is steadily being replaced by what scientists are learning. Meanwhile, many myths continue to circulate and endure. Clearing up some of the misunderstandings about acne is what this article is about.

Myth #1: Acne only affects appearance. Acne can also cause deep psychological distress. Severe acne can lead to low self-image and feeling depressed. There is a strong link between severe acne and social withdrawal.

Myth #2: Acne is caused by poor hygiene. While skin infections are associated with acne, lack of cleanliness is not the reason for acne outbreaks. The combination of oil and dead cells which produce acne is located beneath the skin’s surface where it is impossible to clean it away. Gentle cleansing with soap and water once or twice daily will keep your skin as healthy as possible. Scrubing too hard may worsen acne.

Myth #3: Acne is caused by specific foods. Chocolate has long had a reputation as a pimple producer. Studies have shown no scientific evidence that this is true. The same holds true for potato chips and sugar. There are some foods that do seem to aggravate (not cause) the condition: milk and foods high in iodine, such as seafood.

Myth #4: Acne has to run its course. There are many acne treatments available both over-the-counter and stronger medicines from a dermatologist.

Myth #5: The more acne medicine the better. Some people believe that if their acne gets worse they should just use more medicine. That’s a bad idea because medicines can be dangerous when taken in large quantities. Excess use of acne ointments may just irritate the skin further.

Myth #6: Sunbathing is good for acne. Exposure to the sun dries out excess oils, so it does improve acne short-term. However, long-term the skin adapts and the acne is unfazed. Worse, there is scientific evidence that sun exposure damages the skin and increases the chance of skin cancer.

Myth #7: Makeup causes acne. Some makeup products can clog the pores, which is bad for the health of your skin. Cosmetics that are labeled “noncomedogenic” or “nonacnegenic” are safe to use. Some brands are made with ingredients that actually treat acne.

Myth #8: Acne is only a teenage condition. While most teens have acne, so do many adults. Acne generally clears up by the early 20s. But some people experience acne for the first time as late as their 40s. And for the most unfortunate of all, some people endure acne flare-ups their entire lives.

Myth #9: Acne is related to sex. We’ve probably all heard that either celibacy or too much sex causes pimples. There is no evidence for this. There is a link between sexual activity and hormone production, but the relationship between sex and the production of sebum (the oily substance which combines with dead skin cells to cause acne) is not known. Stress and anger also affect hormone levels.

Myth #10: Popping pimples is the best way to get rid of them

The fact is popping pimples may worsen acne by spreading the bacteria that is causing it. Popping can also lead to eventual scarring, which in severe cases, can be permanent.

Acne Prevention Tips

Effective acne prevention requires using the right treatments, and adjusting product use and hygiene habits. If you want to know how to get rid of pimples, and deal with other skin problems like oiliness and blackheads, take a look at these great tips.

– Oily hair can aggravate acne, so stay away from oily products like pomades or hair spray, especially if you want to get rid of pimples on your forehead.

– If your hair is long, wear it pulled back or consider a shorter style that keeps it off your face, neck and shoulders if acne prevention is important in those areas. Be sure to pull your hair away from your skin when you sleep so that pimples don’t develop overnight.

– Use “noncomedogenic” (won’t clog pores or cause blackheads) or “nonacnegenic” (won’t cause pimples) cosmetics and suntan lotions.

– Avoid using moisturizers on acne-prone areas to get rid of pimples you have there or practice good acne prevention; if you do use a moisturizer, make sure it is not acnegenic.

– Use topical treatments, such as Nature’s Cure medicated spray, anywhere that you tend to get breakouts for acne prevention – don’t just spot-treat existing blackheads and pimples. The pore-clogging process happens two to three weeks before any blackheads or blemishes become visible on the skin. Since the salicylic acid acne medication in the body spray is an exfoliant, it helps to remove the dead skin that combines with oil and dirt to form those nasty blackheads and whiteheads that can get infected and become pimples.

– Wash the skin gently with a mild soap or cleanser and warm (not hot) water once or twice daily. Hot water and harsh cleansers can further irritate your skin and undermine your acne prevention efforts.

– It’s tempting to try to scrub away acne, but that’s not how to get rid of pimples. Scrubbing too hard or too frequently can actually make your acne worse and promote scarring by increasing inflammation or rupturing cysts under your skin, making bacteria spread.

– Since stress can trigger acne, try to avoid stressful situations, resolve stresses by talking to friends/family or a professional, and be sure to eat right and get enough sleep. Sometimes the stress of having acne and trying to figure out how to get rid of pimples can make things worse. But if you take action toward acne prevention with these tips, you can diffuse some of that stress.

– Exercising regularly can also help reduce stress and it increases blood circulation and oxygen penetration to the skin, which may help with acne prevention.

– Drink plenty of water a day to help “detoxify” the body from the inside out.

– If you work out, bring along pre-moistened alcohol towelettes to wipe sweat off your face, back and chest. Use towels to cover neck and chest areas to prevent coming in direct contact with the equipment.

– Sweat combines with skin oils to trap dirt and bacteria in your pores, causing blackheads and pimples, so it’s important to shower as soon as possible after you work out or sweat profusely.

The Basics of Acne

We see it and we obsess over it but do we know anything about it?

Acne is a skin condition brought about by a host of factors that all contribute to its development. It starts off with an excess production of oil on the skin due to the over activity of body’s skin glands. The body’s hormonal havoc may lead to the plugging and clogging of the pores. When these oils interact with the dead skin cells that line up the pores and the dirt that accumulates from the environment, outbreaks may occur especially when bacteria begins to accumulate.

Genetics play a role in acne. People whose family members have acne will most likely develop acne or have children who will develop the condition. The body’s internal hormonal system also contributes. This is the reason why teeners are more predisposed to it than adults.

Acne does not only occur on the face, although they are much visible there. Acne may crop up in different parts of the body but the most common is of course in the neck, at the back and on the shoulders.

There are five different types of acne, or one may also call them stages of acne. The first one is the most common form, acne vulgaris. This is actually the mild to moderate version of acne problem. Do not get be confused. If your only problems is some zits that you can count with your fingers then this is not your problem. Acne vulgaris involves all the works, whiteheads, blackheads, papules and pustules, which are quite visible as they often have a white or a yellow center. In severe cases of acne vulgaris, the person may also experience the development of nodules and even cysts that are filled with pus. These are the forms of acne that when not treated carefully may lead to scarring.

Another form of acne is the Acne Rosacea, which may appear as the red rash that covers the spaces in between pimples and other blemishes. The condition occurs more often in women than in men and may require specialized treatment and care compared to Acne Vulgaris.

Acne Conglobata, on the other hand, is more severe as it occurs as an interconnected leasions that are dotted with pimples, whiteheads and blackheads. Because of the severity of the condition, this often leads to scarring.

The fourth one is the Acne Fulminans, which is actually similar to Acne Conglobata except that it occurs suddenly. The acne oozes out and the body is even affected, frequently resulting in aching muscles and joints. Males are more affected by this than women. To treat the condition, doctors often recommend the use of Accutane, which is very effective in completely stopping the breakouts altogether. This however is not often prescribed and only as a last resort because of the side effects that it can cause in the body especially for women who have just gotten pregnant.

The last type of acne is the Pyroderma Faciale, which can be often seen in women, 20 to 40 yeatrs old. This is actually quite severe as it often involves the presence of nodules, sores and some pustules, which will no doubt all lead to scarring in the future. Still, if treated well, the condition will rarely continue or last for longer than a year. The important is to have it treated as soon as it crops up.

Acne Skin Care Products That Work

Acne is one of the most common skin problems that people have to deal with it. Being a disorder that is caused by irritated blackheads and whiteheads, acne becomes difficult to cure if the infection is left untreated which leads to further irritation and may produce abscess.

A normal pimple has a life cycle of six to eight weeks without treatment. But when it develops to acne, it would require more time to heal it without painful peeling, acne traces, or ugly scars. If you think you’re pimples become infected and irritated that may lead to acne, you need to find a good line of acne skin care products as early as now. This is a very effective way to control acne that may cause you bigger problems in the future.

Effective Acne Skin Care Products

The first thing you need to consider when looking for acne skin care products is finding a good cleanser. Since cleansing the skin is the first step in treating your skin disorder, it pays to look for a good cleanser that will help the treatment more effective and faster.

One of the most effective acne cleansers in the market today is the Active Cleansing Gel that contains triple exfoliating action of salicylic acid, glycolic acid, and lactic acid. This acne skin care product helps you clean your skin without deeply exfoliating it. Whipped Camphor Cleanser is also a popular product for deep cleaning the skin.

When looking for acne kits that would prevent the skin disorder, look for those kits that have products containing benzoyl peroxide, sulfur and glycolic acid that are usually customized for individual skin care needs. When there is a need for you to use accutane acne products—a prescription medicine that is used to treat severe acne—make sure that you are constantly monitored by your dermatologist or by the doctor who prescribed the medication.

More and more dermatologists now recommend Acne Clearz Acne products as a good acne skin care product. Aside from being DHEA and fragrance free, these products are good for adults and teens. Since it the products feature hydroxy and anti-oxidant protectors, it is also good for good for sensitive skin. These products are also known for containing superior oil production ingredients that focus on cleaning the pores to fight existing acne.

The Acne Control Thera Line, on the other hand, is primarily physician formulated. The products have sebum protection and oil control, which are good acne bacteria destroyers. These acne skin care products help prevent acne by removing dead skin cells through safe exfoliation.

While some of the products’ contents minimize pores, others dissolve white and black heads to soothe the skin. The major components of these products are benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, and sulfur and are expected to work in as early as six week of use.

Effective acne skin care products also include topical treatments. Acne Ltd. III offers products that are known for destroying acne bacteria, fungi, parasites, and viruses in the areas affected. These products are formulated with highly concentrated ingredients include zinc oxide, iron oxide, sulfur, sodium chloride, poyethylene glycol and magnesium stearate which also contain moisturizer so as not to dry the skin when applied.

Acnesil Acne Products, on the other hand, also offers topical creams that have melaleuca alternifolia, aloe vera and vitamin E that are known to reduce whiteheads. These products serve as the “first aid” when signs of a pimple breakout occur. Formulated not to dry up the skin even when used on larger areas, the products also speed up the span of time to heal an acne outbreak.

While most acne skin care line offers products that contain medication and treatment concentrates, the Body Shop Acne Products has a wide range of tea tree oil based products to soothe and pamper the skin. Some of the products include tea tree oil facial blotting tissues, tea tree oil facial wash, tea tree oil facial scrub, tea tree oil daily cleansing wipes, tea tree oil face mask, tea tree oil blemish stick, tea tree oil daily foaming facial wash, and tea tree oil cosmetics like the tea tree oil pressed powder and blush on.