Acne is a skin disorder resulting from the actions of hormones andother substances on skin’s oil glands and hair follicles. These thingsoften lead to plugged pores and outbreak of lesions more commonly knownas pimples and zits. Acne lesions basically occur on the face, back,chest, neck and shoulders. Thus acne is a term for plugged pores[blackheads and whiteheads], pimples and even deeper lumps [cysts andnodules] that appear in different parts of the body.
How does acne develop?
Acneis a disease of the pilosebaceous units [PSUs], which consists ofsebaceous glands connected to a canal, called a follicle that containsa layer of fine hair. These sebaceous glands produce an oily substancecalled sebum that normally empties onto the skin through the opening ofthe follicles. When the walls of this plugged follicle breaks down, itstarts spilling everything like sebum, bacteria and shed skin cells,thereby leading to lesions and pimples.
Factors that make acne worse
Althoughthe exact cause of acne is still unknown, but doctors have a strongbelief that they result from various factors. One of the main factorsinclude sudden burst of androgens that occur more during puberty. Thefactors of acne include heredity or genetics. Children usually have atendency of getting acne from their parents and often get affected dueto usage of drugs like androgens and lithium.
However, there are several factors that can make acne worse:
Changing hormone levels in adolescent girls and adult women
Excess secretion of oil after using of skin products like moisturizers and cosmetics.
Pressure from tight collars, tight sports uniform and backpacks
Environmental irritants like pollution and high humidity
Hard scrubbing of skin
Squeezing or picking at blemishes
Stress and anxiety
Types of acne
People suffering from acne can basically have a variety of lesions that can act as a detriment to the skin.
Following are the types of acne:
Comedo – an enlarged and plugged hair follicle that mainly produces whiteheads
Papules – inflamed lesions that usually appear as small pink bumps on the skin that can appear to be tender on touch
Cysts – deep, painful and usually pus-filled lesions that can cause scarring
Nodules – large painful solid lesions that are lodged deep within the skin
Pustules – papules topped with white and yellow pus-filled lesions that are basically red at the base
How to treat acne?