“Spots, zits or pimples” – what ever you choose to call them – they all come under the heading of Acne Vulgaris.
There are a number of contributors to the formation of acne.
Acne is caused by a blockage of the opening of the oil (or sebaceous) glands of the skin.
Excess oil and sebum production exacerbated by hormonal influences on sebaceous glands, as well as dead skin physically blocking pore openings, can cause acne.
A bacterium named Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes) has also been implicated as a cause of acne.
Unfortunately only 30 % of stubborn acne cases are treated by a doctor leaving the other 70 % to suffer.
Acne usually occurs in adolescents during puberty, it usually occurs on the face but also occurs on the upper chest, back shoulders and neck. Acne can extend into later life, including 30’s, 40’s and even 50’s.
Hormonal activity, such as puberty and the menstrual cycle, contribute to the formation of acne. Up to 33% of women have a condition called Polycystic Ovaries which is a contributing factor to stubborn acne.
Although acne is not strictly an inherited condition, some studies have demonstrated that many adolescent children with acne come from families that at some time had suffered from this disorder.
There has been considerable debate over whether or not a connection exists between having acne, and a persons diet. A high sugar diet and increased milk consumption are associated with worsening acne.
Oil based skin care products can actually contribute to acne and should be avoided.
When your body is stressed, this can throw off your equilibrium and you may experience changes such as acne, weight gain and increased blood pressure. Acne suffers are more likely to report symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Using a neutral cleanser when facial cleansing is particularly important for those who are generally prone to acne. Exfoliating and keeping the face clean will help to make acne outbreaks happen less frequently and be less severe when they do occur. Touching and squeezing pimples can make them worse and increase the risk of scarring.
Certain medications can cause acne flare ups, or make acne worse. Some types of birth control pills, anti-depressants, anti-convulsive and anabolic steroids can contribute to, or further activate acne.