“It’s ‘just a phase’ they said and I believed them, but it was not to be. From puberty to adulthood, from rebellious phase of those teenage years to the growing up to my somber self- everything has changed from the clothes I wear, the music I listen to and even some of the friends I have; everything but the problem of Acne and Pimple which continues to stalk my life even now that I am in my 30s.” This well is the reality for countless others who are suffering from acne, a problem that affects both the gender and comes at any age sometimes even in 40s.
When it comes to Acne, everybody has an opinion for some ‘too much oily food causes it’ to ‘it is the hormones that are to blame’ while others end up blaming their genes. This article will try to differentiate between the actual facts and just hearsay.
What exactly is Acne?
Acne is disorder which causes inflammations and eruptions on the skin. It is seen more during puberty but is also prevalent in adults. Acne can be present on the skin as any of the following- black heads, white heads, pimples, deep pimples or boils.
During puberty, the hormonal changes cause over production of sebum by the sebaceous glands present deep under the skin. The sebum in normal condition is responsible for keeping our skin moisturized but due it’s over production; sebum gets clogged in the pores and cannot reach the outer layer of the skin. The sebum along with the dead skin that gets accumulated in the pore is acted by the bacteria leading to acne.
Should I pop my pimple?
That’s the first instinct when we see an unruly pimple out on your face where everyone can see it. But stop! Popping the pimple with any instruments or your nails increases the chances of infection. Popping the pimple also leaves a mark behind which makes it look worse. Thus it is advisable to let the pimple as it is, it will heal on its own and will not leave those marks behind.
Will washing my face, solve my problem?
Even though it seems like that it is the dirt and sweat that leads to formation of blackheads and pimples, it is not the case. It is the walls of the pores that stick together forming a black head. Too much washing may lead to irritation of the pores and more breakouts. Washing your face twice a day with a mild cleanser is adviced.
Diet and Acne must be related, right?
Those with acne are commonly to stay away from fried and oily foodstuffs. There is still little evidence to prove that there is a direct relation between diet and acne. But some experts believe there is some relation between insulin resistance and acne. Thus foods high in carbohydrates that are increase sensitivity to insulin like breads, cakes, burgers, sweetened drinks must be avoided.
There are other studies that link acne with dairy products but unless a direct link is proven it is unwise to give up on these. The best kind of diet for those with acne is one with plenty of fruits, vegetables and whole grain products.
What are the treatments for Acne?
There are OTC or on the counter creams containing benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid help in drying the skin and fighting bacteria in the skin.
If these creams don’t help you, you can consult a dermatologist will study your skin and recommended specific creams, gels suiting to your skin.
Retinoid creams are also proven to help acne. Retinoid creams are derivative of vitamin A which helps accelerate the turnover of tropical skin cells so that the old cells don’t accumulate and clog the pores.
For those who have a more serious case of acne, your dermatologist may recommend chemical peel and microdermabrasion which can help heal the scars left behind.
Which home remedies are proven to be effective?
Jojoba oil: One of the most reliable ways of treating acne, jojoba oil works wonders. When applied to the skin, jojoba oil feels like its own sebum to the skin which then reduces the sebum production thus reducing acne. Jojoba oil also fights wrinkles and moisturizes dry skin.
Take few drops of jojoba oil in your palms and spread in on your face.