Acne, by definition, is an inflammatory disease of the sebaceous (oil) glands. Characterized by blackheads, whiteheads, papules (pimples), pustules (pimples with pus), and/or cysts.
Acne affects people of all ages. We have long ago dispelled the myth that it is a “teenage” problem as more and more adults are suffering from acne these days, well into middle age. Women in particular.
Some experts argue that acne is not a skin condition, but rather, a disease that is genetically predisposed. I would have to agree with both of these points.
Triggers such as the sun, environment, stress, diet, hormones, pregnancy, and cosmetics, for example, are a big part of what activates and exacerbates acne. In terms of genetics, it has been well defined that genes play a huge role when it comes to disease, and acne is no exception.
Different strokes for different folks.
Most individuals who suffer from any form of acne will experience it mainly in their teen years during puberty, when hormones are at an all time high. Some of us will experience nothing more than the occasional breakout, while others of us have been battling acne since birth. In women, these hormones never really seem to ease up, causing us to battle acne later on in our 20’s, 30’s and even 40’s.
Treatments for acne include prescription drugs such as systemic antibiotics and Accutane (a synthetic derivative of Vitamin A), as well as topical treatments which include Salicylic Acid, Benzoyl Peroxide (sulfur), and Retin-A.
Before proceeding with treatment its important to identify which Grade of Acne you have, since one of them can only be treated by a Dermatologist. For a complete explanation on these grades visit the Reference 20 tab.
Of course, as with anything else, prevention is key. Avoid triggers as best you can, particularly stress which throws hormones all out of whack and stimulates oil production. and Never Ever PICK! Picking spreads bacteria!
Until next time when I expand on triggers and how they activate and exacerbate an acne condition ;).