In your teens? Puberty hitting like a truck? Face full of acne?
Acne vulgaris is a very common problem in teenagers these days. It is a disease of hair follicles of the face, back and chest which affects almost every teenager. These aren’t caused by bacteria, though bacteria play a very important role in its development.
Acne appears on the skin as comedones also referred to as blackheads or whiteheads, tender red inflammatory lesions known as pimples or zits and pus-filled pustules or cysts.
Why do we get acne?
We have sebaceous glands in our skin which provide moisture and lubrication to the skin. Sometimes due to excess stress, hormones, excess secretion or dead cells their pores become clogged. Bacteria get entrapped within them and cause an inflammatory reaction which makes it red and tender. Due to this, our body sends white blood cells and macrophages to the site to fight them and cause healing. This process leads to scar formation.
Now comes the main question
How to get rid of acne?
1. Keep your hands off your face!!
It seems very tempting to pop your pimple but DO NOT DO IT. Yes, popping a pimple will not heal them but only cause more pimples or leave scars. Popping them might push the bacteria and pus more deep into the skin and that may cause more tenderness and inflammation. Moreover, where the pus comes out on the skin, the bacteria spread to the surrounding area and might cause more pimples. The healing process is slowed down and more scars are formed.
2. Home remedies yay or nay?
I know everyone these days prefers the very natural, easy and cheap home remedies for everything but they do not always burn. Everyone would be swearing that toothpaste, lemon, saliva, and urine to be applied on the skin but hushhhh ! Hold on right there. I know some toothpaste consists of triclosan, which is also an ingredient in anti-acne creams but toothpaste also consists of many other ingredients that cause irritation to the skin. Similarly, lemon also has acidic nature thus irritating the skin, especially the already broken one. You can use honey and tomatoes as a moisturizer . You can also use potatoes and lemon juice on healed acne to get rid of scars as they are natural skin lightening agents.
3. Apply warm/cold compress
Hot and cold compresses both have different functions. Heat causes the pimple to swell up more and thus cause the head to rise up near the surface of the skin and allows sebum and bacteria to exit. In simple terms, it will fasten the natural process. You can either use the hot compress or steam for the purpose. Whereas cold compress works in the opposite manner, it will reduce the inflammation and redness over the skin and makes the pimple give a less horrible appearance. Cold compresses also reduce pain.
4. Use an acne spot treatment
Not only wash off your makeup at night but also use the correct night creams and moisturizer according to your skin type. You can use topical benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, retinoids, azelaic acid, topical antibiotics, isotretinoin, oral birth control pills, and laser treatments
5. Wash your face regularly.
Your sebaceous glands stay active throughout the day. During a normal day, dirt and pollution get accumulated in your skin and might hasten the pimple formation. It is only going to flare up the disease. So try to wash your face regularly after coming back from outside or exercising especially.
6. Go light on makeup
Makeup is comedogenic i.e. it will clog the pores on your skin and cause blackheads, whiteheads, and breakouts. Avoid makeup on your skin and if necessary choose the mineral-based makeup products rather than oil-based formulations. So always remove your makeup whenever not necessary and let your air breathe.
In a nutshell…
- Wash your face every time you get back from outside
3. Apply sunscreen before going out.
4. Use moisturizer
5.Apply night cream (sulfur-containing)
6. Go light on makeup
Treating acne requires a lot of patience so wait for at least 2-3 months for any of the treatments to show required results. Continue the treatment and soon enough you would be good to go.