Many people see acne as a right of passage for teenagers and think they can just use over the counter products from the drug store, just like they did when they were teenagers. But having acne doesn’t always stop when you leave your hormone-filled teen years. Additionally, it can have detrimental psychological effects and can leave scars on the face that last a lifetime. Modern dermatology has ways to treat acne that can avoid a lot of the scarring, emotional issues, and can help adults who still have frequent outbreaks. Our dermatology clinic in Boulder treats skin issues, including acne, on a regular basis and we’d be happy to treat you or your teenager too.
Understanding the Causes of Acne
- Acne is rooted in sebum getting trapped in a hair follicle and cycling through being clogged, inflamed, and infected.
- Every hair follicle has a sebaceous gland in it. During puberty, hormones increase the production of sebum and so it is more likely to clog the hair follicle. When this happens, there is a white head. When the sebum is exposed to air, it oxidizes and turns black, and this is what we call a black head.
- As the sebum continues to be produced, the area can become inflamed and swollen.
- When bacteria gets into the hair follicle, it can become infected, and this is when cystic acne occurs. This is a painful and embarrassing condition. It is natural that a person would want to seek medical attention to ease the pain and appearance of red swollen bumps on their face.
What Can You Do to Treat Acne
- If you’ve tried over the counter medications and they don’t seem to be helping, or you want to skip right to getting the advice of medical professionals, call for an appointment with a dermatologist.
- The first thing you can do to treat acne is to make sure you are treating your skin right. While you need to keep your facial skin clean, you don’t want to use harsh chemicals that can increase the redness. You also don’t want to overly dry your skin because your body will produce more sebum to moisturize it. You need to find the balance that works for your skin, a daily routine that your skin responds to.
- The next thing you can do is to watch what you eat. There are plenty of people who claim that they eat all the sugar they want and they don’t get acne. That may well be true for them, but if you find that eating sugars increases your acne, you would do well to avoid it. Don’t forget that when you eat carbohydrates, your body turns them into sugars so avoiding complex carbs is also something you can do to see if your acne lessen.
Sugar spurs acne because it increases your insulin output which, in women, stimulates the productions of the male hormone androgen, and more acne.
What Your Dermatologist Can Do
- We offer prescription medications in the form of creams that you can use to help minimize acne.
We can also prescribe micro-antibiotics which help control the bacteria that is at the root of infections.
If you want to minimize acne and the detrimental psychological effects it can have, and the scarring it causes, call Kallgren Dermatology in Boulder for an appointment.