The Main Causes of Adult Acne

How to Eradicate Them

As reported in “The Telegraph” in June 2016, there is definitely a rise in adult acne and more and more people are seeking specialist treatments, women being the ones most affected by this late-onset of acne onslaught.

Acne can affect two groups of people in adulthood. Those who already had acne as a problem in their teens and those who never suffered from acne at all, but suddenly find their skin breaking out, without any apparent reason. This is most common among people with oily or greasy type.

This skin type tends to produce more sebum – the natural oils that lubricate the skin. This excess production of oils can be the effects of a genetic predisposition or experiences of a spike in “male” hormones such as testosterone in the body.

When this happens, it is important to take care of your skin, properly cleansing it with non-comedogenic skincare products which are formulated so as to avoid pores from being blocked. Blocked pores are the breeding grounds for bacteria. A combination of excess sebum, dead skin cells and bacteria forms the unsightly lesion that most acne sufferers dread.

For most people when this happens, they start cleansing their skin more vigorously using over the counter cleansing products and this tends to aggravate the situation. All of a sudden, they have a full blown skin problem on their hands with acne popping up around the mouth, chin, and jaw. This is where on the face adult acne tends to appear. The pimples can also appear on the back and chest and very likely to leave long-term scars if not dealt with in the early stages.

Generally the most likely causes of adult acne are:

1. Hormonal changes:

  • The menstrual cycle
  • Pregnancy
  • Processes such as IVF
  • The menopause

2. The side-effects of starting or stopping medications:

  • Stopping of birth control pills
  • Taking medications that includes corticosteroids and anticonvulsants

(If this happens, consult your doctor before making any changes)

3. Stress

  • In periods of stress your body produces more androgens – a type of hormone which in turn increases the production of sebum and oils by stimulating the oil glands.
  • Lack of care and attention to your skin surface can lead to infected pores and unsightly pimples and acne.

4. Body care products you apply on your skin

  • Cosmetic products can clog your pore a breeding ground for bacteria
  • Body care especially shampoos and body gels containing chemically based ingredients can irritate your skin, making it sensitive and defenceless

Adult acne-skin – Do’s & Don’ts

The acne experience is different for each and everyone, for some it may be a few spots whist for others it is a face full of pus-filled lesions sensitive painful and unsightly. The treatment is similar for everyone as the root of the problem is the same. We will start with what you should not do.

Don’ts

Effects of popping, picking and squeezing:

  • Aggravate blemishes
  • Deepen lesion into the pores which increase the possibility of:
    • Deep scars
    • Infections
    • Discoloured skin patches

Effects of scrubbing and over-cleansing:

  • Frequent washing and scrubbing causes the skin to produce more oil which in turn worsen the lesions

Effects of using irritants:

  • Soap, cleansers and over the counter products that contain chemical ingredients are irritants, likely to cause more damage to your skin such as:
    • Causing the surface layer to dry out
    • Cracking red rims around the lesions
    • Making your skin sensitive, red looking at all times
    • Causing the sebaceous gland to produce more sebum
    • Giving your skin a dull and tired look
    • Giving you an overall unhealthy look

Do’s

Products to use on your skin:

  • Natural water base products to cleanse your skin
  • Shampoos that do not contain sulphate or other chemically based ingredients
  • Essential oils that have anti-bacterial properties
  • Products containing natural anti-acne ingredients

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