Acne is a common skin problem mostly occur in young age. The main health problem among the people with acne is “How to get rid of acne” and “How to get rid of acne scars”. Acne occurs when your hair follicles become filled with oil and dead skin cells. They normally develop on face, chest, shoulders and back because these areas of skin have the most oil glands. Acne appears in three types of lesions such as comedo or blackhead, inflammatory papule and pustule or pimple. Though it most popular in teenagers, influences people of any age.
There are treatments to cure acne and scars. But it takes a long time to heal them. The pimple bumps are healing slowly. This lead to the emotional distress of the person.
What causes of acne?
The four main factors cause of acne is excessive oil production, hair follicles plugged by oil and dead skin cells, bacteria, excessive activity of the androgens hormone. The skin of the affected areas has the most oil (sebaceous) glands. They are joined with hair follicles.
When filled the hair follicles by the bacteria and oil, follicle wall may bulge and produce a whitehead. They are the whiteheads. When the whiteheads open to the air, become black or brownish. They called blackheads. Though they appear as dirt stuck in pores, it is not.
If blocked hair follicles become inflamed or infected with bacteria, seem as red spots with a white centre.
Risk factors of acne
There are several risk factors for acne. First risk factor to acne is age. Though most common in young population, people of all age can get acne. Certain medications containing corticosteroids, androgens or lithium are affected to hormone changes. It leads to getting acne. If someone has a family history he is likely to develop it, too. People who use oily creams or other productions more prone to get acne.
Though most people think stress also causes get acne, it is not true. But it may make it worse if you have acne already.
Symptoms of acne
According to the severity of the condition, differ the symptoms. These are the common symptoms can see.
- Whiteheads or closed plugged pores
- Blackheads or open plugged pores
- Small red, tender bumps
- Pimples or pustules – pus-filled follicles
- Nodules – large and painful lumps beneath the skin surface
- Cystic lesions – Large painful pus-filled lumps beneath the skin surface
Treatments to get rid of acne
Though you want to get rid of acne, if acne products do not help yet, meet a doctor or a dermatologist. He can help you to solve the problem. He can prescribe the best medications and treatments to cure it. The medications prescribed by the dermatologist, vary according to your age, the severity of the condition and the type of the pimples.
The medications are used to decrease oil production, speed the skin cell turnover, prevent bacterial infection or lessening inflammation. But most people say that though take medications to prevent acne, there is no effect. The reason for it is, the medications take about four to eight weeks to show an effect. Just after to start taking medications, the condition may worsen. Then after, gradually decreases the pimples. It may take many months or years to heal acne completely.
Control the pimples, prevent scarring or other damage to the skin, get rid of scars are the goals of medications. There are different types of medicines to get rid of acne. They are;
Antibiotics; These drugs kill the excess skin bacteria. Antibiotics give together with retinoid drugs when starting treatments and not allow to apply topical antibiotics alone. Dermatologist advises you to apply antibiotics in the morning and the retinoid in the evening.
Retinoids; The retinoids and retinoid-like drugs available as gel, lotion or cream. The doctor prescribes to apply this thrice per week in the beginning and then daily. It prevents plugging of the hair follicles.
Salicylic acid; Salicylic acid also prevents plugged hair follicles. These are available as wash-off and leave-on products. But the evidence is limited.
Salicylic acid and azelaic acid; This acid has antibacterial properties. This is derived from whole-grain cereals and animal products. Applied twice per week. This is a drug which shows effects quickly. When used in combination with erythromycin, more effective. Due to the less side effect, can prescribe to pregnant and breastfeeding mothers.
Dapsone 5% gel; This is used to treat for inflammatory acne. But a redness or dryness can occur as a side effect.
Antibiotics; Antibiotica helps to reduce bacteria and fight inflammation. The goal of giving oral antibiotics is to prevent possible antibiotic resistance when applying topical antibiotics. Oral antibiotics give only for a short time period. Generally, uses minocycline, doxycycline, macrolide. The antibiotics used with topical retinoids and benzoyl peroxide reduce the risk of developing antibiotic resistance.
Anti-androgen agents; When oral antibiotics don’t affect, uses these drugs. It decreases the effect of androgen hormones on the sebaceous glands. But there are several side effects like breast tenderness and pain during menses period.
Contraceptive treatments; Contraceptives consists of estrogen and progestin hormones use to get rid of acne. The effectiveness can be seen after a few months. So when starting these drugs, gives other acne drugs also for a few weeks. The contraceptive drugs also have side effects such as weight gain, breast tenderness and nausea and increased risk of blood clots also a one of a serious complication.
Isotretinoin; This is a very powerful drug used to get rid of acne. These drugs use when not respond to other drugs. But isotretinoin not recommended due to the side effects. Ulcerative colitis, risk of depression and suicide, and severe birth defects are the potential side effects. If someone hopes to take isotretinoin he should participate in a Food and Drug Administration-approved risk management program.
The therapies give with or without other treatments and medicines. Combination of the therapies and medications are very effective. These are the therapies used to get rid of acne.
Laser treatments; This is a new treatment to get rid of acne which using special lights and similar devices. Though this is effective, it is not suitable for a long period.
Chemical peels; Regular chemical treatments. Uses salicylic acid, glycolic acid or retinoic acid-like chemicals. Not suitable for the long-time period. Should repeat again and again.
Removal of whiteheads and blackheads; Removes the whiteheads and blackheads using special equipment. But this causes scars.
Injections; The steroid injections use to cure nodular and cystic lesions. Rapid effectiveness and lesses the pain.
Treatment of acne scars; There are several treatments to get rid of acne scars. Examples are; Surgical procedures to elevate deep, depressed acne scars and laser resurfacing to smooth out shallow acne scars. The treatment needs to repeat a few times to see the good effect.
Home remedies to get rid of acne
Honey and Cinnamon Mask
Both honey and cinnamon are excellent sources of antioxidants. Some researches have shown applying antioxidants is more effective at reducing acne than benzoyl peroxide and retinoids. These two has antibacterial properties also.
Mix honey two tablespoons and one tablespoon of cinnamon together. Apply it on the face after wash your face. Wash it after 15 minutes.
Aloe Vera also a plant used to treat skin conditions like acne, burns, rashes and abrasions. Salicylic acid and sulfur which contain in aloe vera help to get rid of acne and get a healthy glowing skin.
Scrape the aloe gel from aloe vera leaf and apply on the affected area. Keep it until dry and wash. You can do this several times a day or week as your ability.
Apply the green tea to the skin is effective as well as drinking. flavonoids and tannins contain in green tea, help to prevent inflammation and bacteria that may cause pimples. The antioxidant called epigallocatechin-3-gallate also prevent the inflammation, decrease sebum production and inhibit the growth of acne.
Boil green tea with hot water for three to four minutes and keep until cold. Then apply to the affected area. Wash after 10 minutes. If not you can apply it before sleep and wash overnight. Do it twice a day.
Fish Oil Supplement
There are two types of omega-3 fatty acids such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). EPA helps to keep the moisture of the skin, managing oil production, lower inflammatory factors and prevent acne. Salmon, sardines, anchovies, walnuts, chia seeds and ground flaxseeds are rich in omega – 3.
Zink is an important nutrient which helps to cell growth, hormone production, metabolism and immune function. And some evidence has shown that zink has an ability to reduce acne. But you should take zink supplements under medical advice because a high dose of zink leads to stomach pain or gut irritation. Oral Zink is an effective method. Applying zinc to the skin is not effective.
Apple Cider Vinegar
The organic acids in apple cider vinegar help to prevent acne-causing bacteria and reduce the appearance of scars. But applying it on the skin may cause burns or irritation, so it should be used carefully.
Mix the apple cider vinegar one tablespoon with water three tablespoons (Because of the risk of burn use a small amount of apple cider vinegar). Apply to the affected area using a cotton swab. Wash after 15 minutes. You can do this once or twice a day
Factors that may worsen acne
There are several factors to increase or risk factor to worse pimples. Bacteria, dust, excessive oil production, poor self-care, some medications, hormones, dandruff are causes to acne.
Prevention of acne
Lifestyle; Regulate good life habits are important. Regular sleep, 6-8 hours per day. Taking a healthy diet and adequate amount of water also helps to keep healthy glowing skin. Prevent from pick or squeeze pimples. Taking bathe and good hygiene also need.
Skincare; There are a number of skincare like cleansers, masks. These help to remove dead cells, dust, oils and clean the skin. Skincare provides nutritions also to the skin.
Reducing bacteria; To reduce the bacteria can use antibacterial cleansers like benzoyl peroxide. They come on different forms such as gels, creams, and lotions. Apply to the affected area help to reduce bacteria.
Reduce excess oil; Though you can’t stop the producing oil on your skin, you can get rid of oil on the surface of the skin. Toners, glycolic acid, alpha-hydroxy acids, sulfur masks or benzoyl peroxide have the ability to remove oils from the skin.
Acne is a common problem of any age group but most in young age. This is a treatable health condition. There are several natural remedies available and medical treatments also. Both of these are effective. These treatments will help to get rid of acne and scars. So do not afraid of acne.
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