Your skin barrier is made up of dozens of pores which are responsible for maintaining skin health. These open pores are important for the skin – they regulate moisture and hydration intake, as well as external nutrients. Unfortunately, these pores can often become clogged and congested usually with oil, sebum, pollutants, and dirt. A buildup of debris on the skin can lead to pimples or zits. If your skin is repeatedly affected by this, then you may have acne causing triggers.

Acne is a chronic, inflammatory skin condition which arises when the pores of your skin become blocked by hair follicles, sebum (an oily substance), bacteria and dead skin cells.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, acne is the most common skin condition affecting people all over the world. It isn’t particularly fatal or harmful, but chronic acne can cause skin distress.

What Causes Acne?

Human skin has pores that connect to oil glands under the barrier. These oil glands are connected to the skin through follicles. Generally, a pimple is formed when these pores get clogged with skin cells, bacteria, or sebum – a continuous cycle of breakouts can lead to acne.

Acne Causing Triggers

1. Overactive sebaceous glands
Sebum on the surface of the skin isn’t the issue; it’s when sebum becomes trapped inside the pore that a blockage is created. It’s important to know that even people with dry skin can have acne.

2. Hormones
Teenagers generally are the main group who suffer most from acne. Hormonal imbalances during this time can lead to overproduction of androgen. Rising androgen levels cause the oil glands under the skin to grow. The enlarged gland produces more sebum which leads to more clogged pores.

Hormones play a huge role in acne development. The major players here are androgen hormones: estrogen and testosterone.

3.  Genetics
Acne does have a genetic component to it, as it does tend to run in families. There is not a specific gene that causes acne.

There are other factors included as well – though, they are not considered causes, some of these can trigger breakouts. Acne causing triggers include:
-Heat and friction
-Certain cosmetic or skincare products

How Can You Treat Acne?

Thankfully, there are many acne treatment options available. Acne treatments can be divided into three categories:
topical (medications you put on your skin, either over-the-counter products or prescriptions)
systemic (prescription oral medications)
procedural (treatments done at a spa or dermatology office).

The type and severity of acne determines the manner of treatment.
Topical acne treatments include gels & creams that contain benzoyl peroxide. Mild acne benefits from such treatments. If the acne is persistent and chronic, then oral medication is the way to go.
Generally systemic and procedural acne treatments lead to long lasting results. However, a consistent skincare routine is necessary to maintain those results.

Acne Prevention Tips

It’s not entirely possible to prevent acne but there are a few steps you can take to lessen the breakouts.

These steps include:
-minimize contact with any acne causing triggers you may have
-avoid makeup that contains oil
-eat a healthy diet with reduced sugar intake

The Bottom Line

These days, virtually every case of acne can be successfully treated. Dermatologists can help treat existing acne, prevent new breakouts, and reduce your chance of developing scars. If you have questions or concerns about caring for your skin, you should make an appointment to see a dermatologist.

I am a writer, covering the sprawling expanse of healthcare, among many other things that I love writing on. I write on healthcare because I want to do my part in informing people about the health industry, When I am not blogging about research and medicine, I enjoy reading, playing squash and backpacking around the world.

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