Acne

Our skin has tiny holes called pores that sometimes get become blocked by oil, bacteria, dead skin cells, and dirt. When this happens, we may develop a pimple or “zit.” If our skin is repeatedly affected by this condition, it turns into acne.

The most common form of acne is called acne vulgaris, which means “common acne”. The redness comes from the inflammation of the skin in response to the infection.

Causes and Symptoms

The exact cause of acne is unknown but there are various factors which have been identified as the reasons behind Acne.

  • Age– Growing teenagers are more likely to develop acne because of the age related harmonal changes.
  • Gender– Boys have more severe acne and develop it more often than girls.
  • Disease– Disorders related to thyroid, adrenal glands, and sex glands can complicate the occurrence of acne.
  • Heredity- Individuals with a family history of acne have greater susceptibility to develop acne.
  • Hormonal Changes- Before menstruation, during pregnancy, and menopause acne is known to flare.
  • Diet- Certain items like chocolates, milk products, and oily junk food may cause flare-ups.
  • Drugs–Side effect of drugs including tranquilizers, antidepressants, antibiotics, oral contraceptives, and anabolic steroids.
  • Personal Hygiene– Abrasive soaps, hard scrubbing, or picking at pimples will make them worse.
  • Cosmetics– Oil-based makeup and hair sprays worsen acne.
  • Environment– Exposure to oil & grease, polluted air, and sweating in hot weather aggravate acne.
  • Stress– Emotional stress may contribute to acne.

Types of acne / pimples

  • Whiteheads– remain under the skin and are very small
  • Blackheads– clearly visible, they are black and appear on the surface of the skin. Remember that a blackhead is not caused by dirt. Scrubbing your face vigorously when you see blackheads will not help.
  • Papules– visible on the surface of the skin. They are small bumps, usually pink.
  • Pustules– clearly visible on the surface of the skin. They are red at their base and have pus at the top.
  • Nodules– clearly visible on the surface of the skin. They are large, solid pimples. They are painful and are embedded deep in the skin.
  • Cysts– clearly visible on the surface of the skin. They are painful and are filled with pus. Cysts can easily cause scars.

Frequently Asked Questions

Acne is an infection of the skin, caused by changes in the sebaceous glands (oil glands). The most common form of acne is called acne vulgaris, which means “common acne”. The redness comes from the inflammation of the skin in response to the infection. Most pimples form on the face, neck, back, chest, and shoulders.

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