Acne is a skin disease for which there is a cure. Approximately 17 million individuals age 12 – 24 have acne in the U.S., but acne strikes at any age. There is even newborn acne. People of all races have to deal with acne at one time or other in their life. Acne is more prevalent in teenagers and young adults and usually goes away by age 30. The disease acne, affects the skin’s oil glands and the pores which are the small holes in the skin’s surface that are connected to the oil glands.
A pimple is formed when the follicle of a skin glad clogs up. The majority of acne appears on the face, but can also appear anywhere on the surface of the skin with the usual places being the face, chest and back.
There are six types of pimples including whiteheads, blackheads, papules, pustules, nodules and cysts. Whiteheads are pimples that stay under the surface of the skin. Blackheads are pimples that rise to the skin’s surface and look black. Papules are small pink bumps that feel very tender. Pustules are pimples that are reddened at the bottom and have pus at the top. Nodules are very painful, large and solid pimples that are deep in the skin. Cysts are very deep pimples that are painful, full of pus and usually leave scars on the skin after they heal.
The most common form of acne is called “acne vulgaris” and is found on individuals who have oily complexions. Teenagers see a lot of acne breakouts because they have changing hormones, which causes greater secretion of oil from their skin glands. The excess oil blocks the pores causing the acne. Other factors can clog pores including pollutants in the air, oil in the air particles and irritants on the skin.
Changing hormones strike again during pregnancy marring the otherwise beautiful time of life for women.
Another type of acne strikes around age 30 or 40 and is called acne rosacea. The face becomes reddened and flushed looking.
Any type of irritation can cause pimples. Clothing rubbing against the skin, a chinstrap, or a soap that is too harsh. Irritations of the skin can cause acne.
The shedding of dead skin cells that cause blockage in the hair follicles or pores of the skin can also cause acne. The blocked pores are breeding ground for bacteria that are already on the skin’s surface.
Other causes of acne are poor hygiene especially poor cleansing of the face that allows pores to become blocked with oil and dirt. Skin products that are put on the skin and irritate the skin causes inflammation, which in turn breeds bacteria.
Whatever the cause of your particular acne, it is a disease that can be treated by addressing the cause. There are products designed to unclog pores, we can use skin products that do not irritate our skin and avoid clothing or objects that irritate our skin. Washing the face, neck, chest and back areas with a mild soap and warm water twice a day also decrease the frequency of acne breakouts.