Acne is interchangeably used for pimples. It is a skin condition that occurs when hair follicles plug with oil and dead skin cells , it is mostly common in teenagers and young adults.
There are different types of acne which include whiteheads, blackheads, some are pus-filled pimples ; pustule, and some are not ; papule, some are large,red,tender bumps called acne nodule or cyst.
Acne can be triggered by different factors which includes:
Hormonal changes: Androgens are hormones that increase in boys and girls during puberty and cause the sebaceous glands to enlarge and make more sebum. Hormone changes during midlife, particularly in women, can lead to breakouts too.
Certain medications: Examples include drugs containing corticosteroids, testosterone or lithium can also cause acne.
Diet: Studies indicate that consuming certain foods including carbohydrate rich foods, such as bread, bagels and chips may worsen acne. Further study is needed to examine whether people with acne would benefit from following specific dietary restrictions.
Stress: Although stress is not a direct trigger for acne, but it may make an existing condition worse.
Types of Acne, symptoms and respective skincare treatments.
This is medically called the closed comedo (closed pore), it forms when excess oil and dead skin cells build up and plug the opening of a pore causing a blemish that is raised and white or flesh colored.
Treatment: To unclog pores,use a retinoid. You can also consider adding on a products with Salicylic acid/ Azelaic acid like The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10% from our store.
Blackheads is medically called the open comedo (Open pores) they develop when excess oil and dead skin cells build up inside a pore. As the buildup accumulates, it widens the opening of the pore and you see a blackhead. Blackheads are not a caused by the individual being dirty but are a result of a chemical reaction. When the buildup inside the pore reacts with oxygen in the air, the black color appears. This reaction is similar to what happens when a cut-up apple turns brown. Hence, an oxidized breakout is called the blackhead.
Treatment: To unclog these pores, use a retinoid (Adepelene) Differin 0.1% Adapalene Acne Treatment Gel, 0.5 oz (15g) , also consider using products with Salicylic acid ,Glycolic acid or Azelaic acid.
Pustule and Papule
Sometimes excess oil, dead skin cells, and bacteria get trapped inside a pore. The bacteria, which are normally found on our skin, can multiple quickly in the excess oil. As the pore fills with bacteria, inflammation (swelling) develops and a pimple appears or breakout. A pimple that contains pus is called a Pustule and a pimple without pus is called a Papule.
Treatment for Pustule/ Papule: Wash your face with an acne product that contains benzoyl peroxide. Resist the temptation to pop. You can also cover with a pimple patches over the night to drain out pus.
Acne Nodule or Cyst
This is when a pore fills with enough excess oil, dead skin cells, and bacteria to cause inflammation (swelling) that goes deep into the skin, an acne nodule or cyst develops. Because these breakouts go deep into the skin, they can feel tender or painful. The main difference between an acne nodule and an acne cyst is that a cyst contains pus and nodules don’t, therefore nodules feel harder compared to cysts when touched.
Treatment: Antibiotics to help kill the bacteria, use benzoyl peroxide and products containing salicylic acid to dry out dead skin and oil trapped in the nodule, retinoids (which are powerful vitamin A derivatives that unclog trapped in the nodule) oral Antibiotics, isotretinoin.
Acne symptoms may not be limited to the face, they may also occur on the back, shoulders, neck and chest.
There are basic routines that can prevent acne; washing of face daily with warm water and a mild facial cleanser, routine use of facial moisturizer, using of non-comedogenic products when applying makeup and remove makeup at the end of each day and keep of hands away from your face often.
Some people dismiss acne as a skin condition that can be eventually outgrown, but it can have a profound and lasting effect on a person’s life as a result of spots left on affected area.
American Academy of Dermatology
J Am Acad Dermatol / 2014;70:108-14 / Health line