Acne is one of the world’s most common skin infections of the skin among pre-adolescent individuals in both girls and boys. It usually declines with age although some would carry them well over into their middle age years.
Treating acne requires an understanding of how it develops in the first place. Underneath the skin surface are sebaceous glands that secrete sebum onto the surface in order to lubricate the skin as well as to protect it against certain microorganisms. This substance is directed towards the outermost layer of the skin through the pores and hair follicles that act like channels toward the outside. Unfortunately, the skin is also home to many kinds of bacteria and other microorganisms that are not necessarily harmful as they are considered normal flora of the skin. However, due to a mechanism that is still poorly understood, the pores get blocked by dead skin cells, oils, and bacteria as well as other debris on the surface of the skin. This results in an inflammatory reaction and when bacteria is involved, eruptions and encrustations can ensue giving rise to the typical appearance of acne, the most common form of which is called acne vulgaris.
Scientists still cannot describe the exact pathophysiologic mechanism that leads to acne although several factors have been identified as the most likely causes of acne. These include hormonal changes or fluctuations, stress, presence of bacteria in the pores, hyperactive sebaceous glands, skin irritation, and substantially large amounts of dead skin cells present on the surface of the skin. How these causative factors exactly produce acne still confuses many in the healthcare profession. Nevertheless, the two prevailing schools of thought that espouse acne causation include inflammatory reaction and skin pore blockage. Treatments therefore, are geared towards addressing these issues.
Unfortunately there is no single acne treatment that can work for all types of people. Different individuals have different skin types as well as different body physiologies. Some may react favorably to some acne removal methods while others simply will not work. For many acne sufferers looking for the best method to remove acne is more of a trial and error method of experimentation and discovery.
However, if one really has to understand the nature of acne and whether or not the causal relationship between the causative factors and acne are clearly established, it would seem that prevention can be a lot more meaningful and more practical way to managing acne simply because there are no acnes to worry about. Making sure that the skin is thoroughly cleansed and scrubbed of dead skin cells from time to time can help reduce the risk of clogging the pores. However, one cannot prevent hormonal fluctuations as well as hyperactive sebaceous glands. It is for this reason that acne treatments may have to be resorted to after all especially in acne breakouts or when preventive measures simply fail.
There are three acne treatment models currently in use. The first is to kill bacteria that grow and proliferate in blocked pores and hair follicles. The second is to remove excess oil that is produced by the hyperactive sebaceous gland. And the third is to remove dead skin cells through exfoliation.
In the first treatment method, topical antibacterial preparations are applied onto the affected skin. In order to get the best results, the topical antibiotic agent must be applied for a minimum of 6 weeks although 8 weeks is desirable. However, if after 8 weeks and the acne has not yet been resolved, antibiotic treatments must be ceased in order to prevent bacterial resistance against the antibiotic. While topical medications are generally safe, some antibiotics have been proven to cause minor skin irritation and peeling of the skin as well as a burning sensation and redness of the skin. Examples of antibiotics used in acne removal include minocycline and doxycycline.
The second acne removal method works by facilitating the effective removal of oil from the clogged pores and follicles. Some products actually go to the extent of suppressing the production of oil, effectively eliminating the acne problem. Isotretinoin, more popularly known for the name Accutane, is one of the acne treatments that are largely considered as the big guns because they work to eliminate the root cause of the problem – a hyperactive sebaceous gland. Unfortunately, isotretinoin has some potentially serious side effects, although rare.
The third treatment method is perhaps one of the most common method used today – the removal of dead skin cells and debris that can clog skin pores. These can include benzoyl peroxide, topical retinoids, salicylic acid, and azelaic acid. These preparations work by removing dead skin cells to prevent skin pore clogging.
There are also some hormonal treatments designed to address the issue of hormonal factors in acne development. This can include oral contraceptive pills and co-cyprindiol. Other treatments include photodynamic therapy, chemical peels, and the use of comedone extractors.
Looking for the best acne removal method is more related to the exact cause of your acne. Like many individuals, you may want to seek the advice of a medical professional first before you apply anything else onto your acne.
Posted in Skin Care by Crystal Luera with .