We all have had a fair share of acne, either in our early teenage years or right after we hit puberty. Most times, it comes as a few spots and other times, it’s a full breakout on the face. The appearance of acne is not restricted to the face alone. There are breakouts on the neck, chest and back too. It is easy to believe that acne is specifically for people with oily or acne-prone skin; that’s a debunked myth. Acnes are of different types and can happen to anyone, irrespective of your skin type. This article will explain what acne is, the different types, why they happen and the best way to avoid them. When you understand acne better, it helps you be patient and kind to your skin. Ready? Let us know what acne is!
WHAT IS AN ACNE
The word “breakout” is very synonymous with acne. An ane, also known as pimple, results from overproduction of oil and build- up of bacteria on the skin. The skin has an oil secretion gland on the face, back, neck, back and shoulder; these places are easily prone to acne or breakouts. Acnes are also a result of hormonal changes from puberty and ovulation or menstruation.
Acne affects the skin due to genetics, stress, weather, and skincare products’ wrong or overuse. Acne becomes visible on the skin when it is clogged, and the pores are blocked by hair. The blockage causes bacteria and leads to dead skin cells. Acne happens to people between the ages of 11 up to 30.
There are different types of acne, and most of them get deep into the skin and leave scars if popped or touched. If not treated properly, this acne leaves spots that range from tiny (pockmarks) to swollen keloids that cause discolouration in an area of the skin. All acne types have other causes and treatments.
The leading causes of acne are
TYPES OF ACNE
There are six subtypes of acne, which are divided into non-inflammatory (comedones) and inflammatory acne. When you are sure of the type of acne you have, treatment becomes more manageable.
As the name implies, this type of acne does not swell up. It is easy for people to ignore and not refer to it as a pimple because of its size. Non-inflammatory acne, which includes blackheads and whiteheads, appears when the skin is clogged. It is easy for the skin pores to be blocked by dirt build-up, oil or bacteria. Most times, this non-inflammatory acne grows inside the skin. If pressed or popped can leave an injury or complications on the skin. Have you ever pressed a blackhead or whitehead, and it causes more severe acne? Understanding the non-inflammatory acne gives you a better reason why it happened.
These are also known as closed comedones; they are white in colour and have a red surrounding. The whitehead is formed by dead skin cells or when the skin is clogged by excess oil production. The whiteheads mostly appear around the nose and under the lower lips (the T-zone). It is challenging to treat whiteheads as it seems like the skin and the pores are closed.
The blackheads, also known as open comedones, are dark colored on the skin. At a first glance you can tell what they are because the skin around it appears normal. Blackheads are whiteheads that get darker over time due to exposure to air. When it comes to blackheads, it is easier to extract because the top of the pores stay open and it is more visible.
TREATMENT FOR NON-INFLAMMATORY ACNE
i. Mild exfoliation with Oatmeal
ii. Honey scrub
iii. Wash your face once in the evening with lukewarm water
iv. Avoid harsh skin care products
Inflammatory acne is a result of bacteria on a clogged skin. It is also caused when the skin is clogged up with dead cells and sebum (excessive production of oil). People with oily skin are prone to inflammatory acne, most times mild, other times severe. They are often red and swollen on the face, back, shoulders or chest.
The papules are sore when touched, it doesn’t have any pus or white substance inside. The papules are formed when you press white heads, it gets into the skin and causes inflammation.
The nodules have the same colour as the skin, it is red, swollen and causes pain when touched. It is a result of unclogged pores and skin irritation. The nodules if not treated properly can leave a scar on the skin. Most times they tend to stay on the skin for weeks or even months.
If you have ever had teenage or puberty pimples, those were pustules. They are red and filled with yellow pus on the surface. Pustules can also be a result of stress, excessive clogging of the skin by sebum or weather. It is a ruptured comedone.
4. Cysts or Cystic Acne
The cyst is always filled with pores from the root to the top of the skin. They are the itchy and painful type of pimples. Cysts appear when there is a build-up of bacteria, dead cells and sebum in the skin. If not treated properly, cysts cause an infection on the skin. Cystic acne leaves a scar, and most times, the best treatment for it is to visit a dermatologist.
TREATMENT FOR INFLAMMATORY ACNE
i. Apply diluted apple cider vinegar on a cotton ball and place it on the affected area of the skin; it fights against bacteria.
ii. Make a honey and cinnamon face mask. Leave it on the face for about 10-15 minutes, rinse with lukewarm water.
iii. Apply green tea or compress a tea bag on the face. It is rich in antioxidants and helps to fight the bacteria in the skin.
iv. Exfoliate regularly with oatmeal. It improves the skin and removes dead skin cells.
Be kind to your skin. If home remedies do not help your acne, don’t panic. Visit a dermatologist. Share this post with a friend who needs it.