It’s a well-known fact that the human body is a fragile object. The slightest problems can develop into something more complicated, which can be quite hard to treat. As the largest organ in the body, our skin is no exception because it can also develop specific problems, such as acne.
Acne is a condition characterised by the formation of pimples and cysts, depending on its severity. It occurs when bacteria live on the skin and feed on the sebum, a fatty substance our skin produces. When the process of sebum production is disturbed, the bacteria multiply, causing acne. While it usually occurs because of hormonal changes during puberty, it can also happen to older people. Acne treatments are always an option, but not many people know about them. For this reason, we’ll answer some of the most common questions about acne.
#1 – What Are the Different Types of Acne?
Acne is divided into two distinct categories: inflammatory and non-inflammatory—the former consists of cysts, nodules, papules, and pustules filled with pus. Cystic acne is particularly painful because it goes deep into the pores, leading to scarring.
On the other hand, non-inflammatory acne is easier to treat because they don’t cause scarring. This category includes blackheads, whiteheads, and comedones.
#2 – Is There a Difference between Hormonal Acne and Other Variants?
Even though they have similar symptoms, hormonal and non-hormonal acne are very different. While the oversecretion of androgens causes the former, the latter is caused by bacteria living in the sebaceous glands that block hair follicles.
Hormonal acne is more severe and may be caused by polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), which can be hereditary. It occurs when the ovaries and the adrenal glands produce more androgens, which are responsible for the development of acne.
On the other hand, non-hormonal acne is caused by bacteria called Propionibacterium acnes, which live in sebaceous glands. If the pores are blocked, the bacteria can’t leave the skin, which causes inflammation.
#3 – What Are Some Treatment Options for Acne?
There are several acne treatment options, so it’s crucial to determine the severity of the condition before deciding what to do. The most common acne treatment methods are:
- Topical antibiotics
- Topical retinoids
- Topical zinc
- Oral contraceptives
- Light and laser therapy
- Medical extraction
- Salicylic acid
- Benzoyl peroxide
The last two are particularly important because they’re considered the ideal solution for developed acne. This brings us to our next question;
#4 – Is There a Difference between Salicylic Acid and Benzoyl Peroxide?
Salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide are considered the best acne treatment on the market. Both can go deep into the pores and clean from them, which is a good solution for acne and black and whiteheads.
However, you need to choose the one that’s best for you. Benzoyl peroxide can dry out the skin, even if you choose the right product for your skin type. This means that your skin may become too thin and sensitive, which can lead to irritation.
On the other hand, Salicylic acid doesn’t have such adverse effects. It works by fighting the bacteria that causes acne, so it’s effective against blackheads and whiteheads. However, it can cause swelling and peeling, so you must consider this.
#5 – What’s the Best Treatment Option?
Finding the best treatment option for someone with acne isn’t easy because the condition can vary among people. One must consider the size of the problem on the skin and the degree of inflammation.
The best treatment options are topical products if it’s mild acne. You can also use a combination of them if you want. However, if you have severe acne, it’s best to use oral products, such as antibiotics and contraceptives.
On the other hand, severe cases of acne can also be deeply painful, especially if the pimples and cysts develop under the skin. If you want to prevent scarring, laser and light therapy is a good option. If all else fails, you can go for clinical treatment with extraction, but you’ll need to speak with a skin specialist first.
Acne is a widespread condition that affects many people. It may be embarrassing and painful for many people, but there’s always a treatment option. It’s best to speak to a skin specialist to ensure you get the proper treatment.
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