Acne develops when sebum and dead skin cells plug the
Acne typically appears on the face, neck, chest, back
and shoulders, which are the areas of the skin with the
largest number of functional oil glands.
This disease is not restricted to any age group; from
teenagers entering puberty to adults in their 20s to 40s can
While it’s not a life threatening condition, acne can be
upsetting and disfiguring. When severe, acne can lead to
serious and permanent scarring.
There are three contributing factors in the
formation of acne:
Overproduction of sebum (oil).
Irregular shedding of dead skin cells resulting in
irritation of the hair follicles of your skin.
Buildup of bacteria.
Hormonal changes in your body can provoke or
aggravate acne in teenagers, both in boys and girls.
In women, it shows up two to seven days before their
periods, and also in pregnant women.
Direct skin exposure to greasy or oily substances, or
to certain cosmetics.
Friction or pressure on your skin caused by items
such as telephones or cell phones, helmets, tight
collars and backpacks.
Signs & Symptoms
There are two types of acne: Non-inflammatory
Occurs when the trapped sebum and bacteria partially
open to the surface and turn black due to melanin. Blackheads can
last for a long time because the contents very slowly drain to the
Occurs when the trapped sebum and bacteria
stay below the skin surface. Whiteheads may show up
as tiny white spots, or they may be so small that they
are invisible to the naked eye.
A blackhead or whitehead can release its contents to
the surface and heal or, the follicle wall can rupture
and inflammatory acne can accure. This rupture can
be caused by random occurrence, by picking or
touching the skin. This is why it is important to leave
acne prone skin relatively untouched.
Inflammatory acne can fall under four categories:
A papule occurs when there is a break in the follicular wall.
White blood cells rush in and the pore becomes inflamed.
A pustule forms several days later when white blood cells
make their way to the surface of the skin. This is what people usually
refer to as a "zit" or a "pimple".
An inflamed lesion can sometimes completely collapse or explode,
severely inflaming the surrounding skin, and sometimes engulfing
neighboring follicles. These lesions are called nodules or cysts:
Occurs when a follicle breaks along the bottom, total
collapse can occur, causing a large, inflamed bump that can be
sore to the touch.
Occurs when a severe inflammatory reaction can result in very
large pus filled lesions.
Topical treatments. Acne lotions may dry up the oil, kill
bacteria and promote sloughing of dead skin cells.
Antibiotics. For moderate to severe acne, prescription
oral antibiotics may be needed to reduce bacteria and
Oral contraceptives. Including a combination of
Ortho-Cyclen and Ortho tri-Cyclen, have been shown
to improve acne in women.
Laser and light therapy. Laser- and light-based
therapies reach the deeper layers of skin without
harming the skin’s surface.
Cosmetic procedures. Chemical peels and
microdermabrasion may be helpful in controlling acne.
Acne scar treatment:
Soft tissue fillers. Collagen or fat can be injected under
the skin and into scars to fill out or stretch the skin,
making the scars less noticeable.
Dermabrasion. Involves removing the top layer of skin
with a rapidly rotating wire brush.Usually reserved for
more severe scarring.
Microdermabrasion. This newer acne scar treatment
involves a hand-held device that blows crystals onto
skin. These crystals gently polish the skin’s surface.
Laser, light source and radio frequency treatments. In
laser resurfacing, a laser beam destroys the epidermis
and heats the dermis. As the wound heals, new skin
Skin surgery. A minor procedure (punch excision) cuts
out individual acne scars. Stitches or a skin graft repairs
the hole left at the scar site.
Wash acne-prone areas twice a day. Washing removes
excess oil and dead skin cells.
Use an over-the-counter acne cream or gel to help dry
excess oil. Look for products containing benzoyl
peroxide or salicylic acid as the active ingredient.
Avoid heavy foundation makeup. Choose powder
cosmetics over cream products because they're less
Remove makeup before going to bed. Going to sleep
with cosmetics on your skin can clog the pores.
Wear loose fitting clothing. Tight fitting clothing traps
heat and moisture and can irritate your skin.
Shower after exercising. Oil and sweat on your skin
can trap dirt and bacteria.
1) A blackhead is an inflammatory acne.
2) A large pus filled lesion is a Cyst.
3) Soft tissue fillers can be used a a acne scar treatment.
4) One way to prevent acne is :
a) Wear tightly fitted clothing.
b) Wash acne-prone areas twice a day.
c) Go to bed with makeup on.
Answers: 1. False 2. True 3. True 4. B.