Acne which is also known as Acne vulgaris is a skin disease which is caused when hair follicles becomes clogged or filled up with dead skin cells and oil from the skin.
The cause of acne till date is unclear, though it has been made clear that 80% of the cases is related to genetics while the effect of sunlight, cigarette smoking, diet and other factors not mentioned is still unknown. It affects mainly the skin, face and upper part of the chest and the back which have great number of oil glands.
Research has shown that there is high risk of having acne during puberty which is due to increase in androgens e.g. Testosterone which often cause excessive and abnormal growth of the bacteria Propionibacterium acnes, which is always present or found on the skin, is often involved.
Types of Acne
These types of acne mentioned below has been found to be the commonest acne among those suffering from the condition.
- Forehead acne
- Chest acne
- Scalp acne
- Pregnancy acne
Forehead acne as the name implies affects most parts of the forehead as the whole area is populated by pimples due to blockage of the pores, dandruff and too much use of oily cosmetics.
It is widely believed that that if you wash your air daily with shampoo it may dry it out and avoid using oily hair gels.
The chest acne affects the chest and back area of the body and when such conditions appear it is better to take care of it on time, if not taken care of its spreads fast and easily.
It is not easy to get rid of due to the fact that facial medications do not work on chest acne most times.
Scalp acne as any other form of acne is also caused by the clogging of hair pores by oil and dead skin cells.
Scalp acne forms as a result of an overactive sebaceous gland which produces excess oil and in turn get trapped within the blocked pores and as a result of this blockage hair follicle enlarge to form little but many bumps and may rupture in time.
Treatment may become hard overtime due to the presence of hair on the scalp interfering with the proposed medication. Application of shampoo to the hair frequently helps to eliminate excess oil.
Pregnancy acne occurs mainly among pregnant women and it is common during the first and second trimester of pregnancy. It is usually cause by increased level of androgen in which usually occur during pregnancy which causes the glands in the skin to manufacture more sebum which eventually leads to inflammation and breakouts.
SYMPTOMS OF ACNE
The signs and symptoms of the disease varies depending on the severity of the individual’s condition.
- It includes bumps or bumpiness all over the skin’s surface,
- Uneven skin texture,
- Skin becomes rough or sandpapery,
- It is always characterized by redness and inflammation,
- swelling and irritation of the skin, along with possible crusting,
- Scarring of the skin.
PREVENTION OF ACNE
Wash acne-prone areas only twice a day
Washing of the prone area removes excess oil and accumulated dead skin cells. But be careful because too much washing can irritate the skin. Wash the affected part of the skin with areas gentle cleanser or soft towel and use oil-free, water-based skin care products and materials.
Remove and clean-up makeup before going to bed
Going to sleep with cosmetics or make-up on your skin can clog your pores. Also, it’s a good practice to dispose old sets of makeup and regularly clean your cosmetic brushes and applicators with soapy water to ensure that oil remnant is kept away from them.
The overall prevention is just to try as much as possible to do away with oily substances inform of makeups and cosmetics, using of lightly applied makeup and cloths that are free on the body to allow for free flow of air.
Wrongly held beliefs and myth about acne
Some believe that acne is caused by poor hygiene which is not true, with this believe people go to the extreme of over washing the affected area with water which in turn makes the whole condition worse.
Acne to many peoples believe is not just a skin infection, it is not contagious and it cannot be contacted by touching.
There is no clear-cut evidence of research that has shown accurately that sunbathing or sunbeds will help clear acne fully.
Some people believe that acne cannot be treated through any medical treatment and research has shown that it works when the prescribed medications are used as directed by the dermatologist.
Household and simple treatment for acne
Cleansing and exfoliation
As discussed earlier that poor hygiene causes acne is a myth, but gentle and soft cleaning of the affected area is important so as not to get it irritated, the use of mild cleanser also help to reduce the condition, mild cleansers such as benzoyl peroxide.
Exfoliation which is an integral part of acne treatment is the removal of dead skin layers, it is often done by washing the face first with mild cleanser then exfoliation is done by using soft facial scrub and it is advised to be done once or twice in a week. This will reduce great amount of clog on the pores of the skin.
Medication for Acne
Benzoyl peroxide can always be found over the counter in various counter, it kills bacteria that enhances or encourage acne, unclogging oil ducts and helps to heal acne pimples.
Direction: it is usually advised to start the medication conservatively that is 5% lotion or gel once in a day, after that if the affected individual is not on another medication then the frequency of usage can be increased to get a better result.
Antibiotics are also available with the doctor’s prescription only. Antibiotics can be very helpful and promising for most acne that is red and also swollen, or for acne that is not healing with the use of other medications. The antibiotics will kill off the bacteria which contribute to whiteheads and blackheads.
It is always advisable to follow the doctor’s prescription, and also advisable to take the antibiotics with plenty of water and some antibiotics also increases the body’s sensitivity to sunlight so it is always advisable to wear sunscreen when outdoor.
With all said so far, this article has shown that acne is a skin disease that is not contagious, can be managed and there is a lot of home remedies and doctor’s prescription for the condition.