Acne – Heartache that can be resolved

Basic facial skin problems sometimes seem inevitable, and one major one is acne. Acne is an issue regarding facial skin that almost everybody has to deal with at one time or another, especially during puberty and adolescence. It is at these times when acne comes along and undermines our confidence the most. Some people try looking after their skin in many different ways, but no matter how much they try, acne still occurs and this can be disheartening. This is because there are still people who do not fully understand the issue of acne. Acne is a naturally occurring small blister (pimples) and can be found on areas such as the face, neck, chest, back and shoulders. You can find all types of pimples, including whiteheads, blackheads, red blisters, pustules, or very deep pimples below the surface of the skin.

How does acne occur and what types are there?

Our facial skin has over 20,000 pores which consist of hair follicles and sebaceous glands. Normally, the sebaceous glands secrete lubricating oils that aid in making sure that the skin does not become too dry. However, if the pores become blocked somehow, either by dead skin cells or dirty particles, the lubricating oils are not able to escape the skin’s surface and form a pimple inside the pore. Bacteria form inside the pore and causes inflammation as well as pain and discomfort.

There are 2 types of acne:

Genuine acne: pimples that have a head (comedone). These include pimples that have a closed head (pimples that are under the skin, also known as whiteheads) as well as pimples that have open heads (also known as black heads).

Artificial acne: pimples that do not have a head. This includes pimples that only have pus, or reddening/blistering of the skin. These sometimes occur due to allergies or exposure to heat.

Causes of Acne:

The most common group where acne can be found is with teenagers, due to a high level of production of the hormone “Androgen”. This hormone is in charge of producing oil on the skin. Having a lot of it is a common cause of acne. We can observe that young teens, or children of the age of 12 and above, tend to have more acne than others. Androgen can be found more prominently in males than in females. However, females will also have increases in the production of Androgen when their bodies begin menstruation. Therefore, it can be observed that females during menstruation have increased levels of acne.

It is not only teenagers that encounter the issue of acne, but rather anybody, regardless of age or gender, can get acne. This is because acne can occur due to a multitude of reasons, such as:

  • The use of non-standard cosmetics, powders, perfumes or body lotion can all have negative side effects. This includes the use of equipment used with cosmetics which has not been properly maintained, such as blush brushes, sponges etc.
  • Incorrect care of facial skin such as the way in which you properly wash your face or overdo how much you wash your face, which may inhibit the way in which oils can normally be secreted and perform their natural purpose.
  • Picking, rubbing, scratching, pinching or peeling the face frequently. This is because our hands tend to have traces of dirty materials or substances that we don’t even know about. When we put our hands to our face we introduce these dirty substances to our pores.
  • Stress from other unrelated activities or events causes the sebaceous glands to produce more oils, possibly resulting in more acne.
  • Exposure to the sun for extended periods of time causes skin cells to die. These dead skin cells go on to block the pores in the skin, causing more pimples and acne.
  • The consumption of alcohol and the smoking of cigarettes can also cause acne to form. The consumption of alcohol can lower your immune system, allowing infection to take place more easily. Smoking cigarettes can cause oxygen levels in the skin to drop, causing skin to sag and become weak, and causing skin cells to produce less Vitamin E (which is a vitamin that helps to reduce acne)

How to look after yourself in order to prevent acne:

Acne is a problem that almost everybody has had to deal with. However, the prevention of pimples is not all that difficult, so long as you understand the reasons as to why acne occurs in the first place, and then react appropriately.

What you must first do is clean the skin on your face evenly by washing your face with cleaning agents or products (that are appropriate for your specific pimple condition) twice a day. Wash gently, making sure to not scrub too aggressively. You can use your own cosmetic skin products for this, but first, be sure to check that they conform with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) beforehand. Also, it is a best practice to test a small amount of the product on a small surface area of your arm in order to check beforehand if you have any allergies to any ingredients used in the product.

Other than the above-mentioned strategies, try to avoid overexposure to the sun and heat. Make sure to get enough sleep and rest. Eat healthy, nutritious foods and partake in healthy amounts of exercise. Drink 6-8 glasses of water per day and try to relax and de-stress as much as possible. All of these things should help reduce the likelihood of having acne.

So, you have acne. How do you fix it?

Something that you must remember if you have acne is “never pick or squeeze”. If you squeeze the pimples yourself, it might cause your face to scar and become inflamed. Because our hands are likely to have multiple types of dirty matter, these particles can make their way into the open sores created by picking or squeezing. This will make the open sores heal much slower than usual. This will cause scarring or “holes” in the skin on your face.

Nowadays, there are many products on the market that help fix problems relating to acne. For example, there are now acne products that mix different compounds that aid in killing specific acne bacteria. This allows the acne a chance to clear itself up. Before trying these different products, be sure to check that they actually fit your specific needs. Also, check that you understand exactly how the product should be used. You should also be regularly cleaning your face as you use these products.

However, if your acne is not reducing, or if you are experiencing other complications such as an increase in the amount of acne, you should not continue using the same products in order to prevent further complications. You should also seek consultation from a doctor or beauty clinic that meets the certification requirements and is reliable in order to receive the correct treatment moving forward.

The issue of acne is not an insurmountable one. If you understand the issue correctly and act accordingly, your confidence will return and you can say “bye bye” to your acne problems.

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