Ways to Avoid Acne

Acne is the most common dermatological condition and is often frustrating and disheartening for those suffering from it. While 80% of American adolescents are familiar with the effects of acne, not everyone is familiar in how to treat or prevent it. Thankfully, your Yardley, PA dermatologists can help you beat acne for good.Acne

How do pimples form? 
Acne occurs when a pore on the skin becomes blocked. Our skin produces an oil called sebum that keeps the skin from drying out. When the skin produces too much of this oil, dead skin cells remain inside of the pore instead of rising to the surface. When p. acnes, a bacteria that lives on our skin, also gets trapped inside of the blocked pore and multiplies, the pore becomes inflamed, and a pimple forms.

Are there different kinds of acne? 
Acne usually occurs in one of three forms:

  • Blackheads and whiteheads: If the blocked pore remains open, it appears black, and is known as a blackhead. If the pore closes, a white bump forms on top, creating a white appearance, known as a whitehead.
  • Papules and pustules: Sometimes, the pore’s walls break due to irritation. This creates papules, hard bumps, or pustules, pus-filled pimples.
  • Nodules and cysts: These kinds of pimples form when the irritation becomes so great that the pore becomes bigger, pushing further down into the skin and becoming painful. Nodules are hard, while cysts fill with pus and feel softer than nodules.

How can I avoid acne?
Sometimes, just washing your face is not effective enough to prevent acne. Using acne-preventing makeups, keeping your face clean, changing your pillowcase once a week and simply not touching your face can help prevent pimples from forming.

How is acne treated? 
Mild acne is often treatable with over-the-counter acne washes that contain benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. These treatments, however, do not clear acne overnight. With correct and committed applications, usually in the morning and at night, results should be seen in about 6 weeks.

In more severe cases, your dermatologists might prescribe antibiotics to help bring down inflammation in the pores from the inside out. For women, birth control is sometimes prescribed to regulate acne-causing hormones in the body. Stronger acne creams or washes can also be prescribed. In-office treatments may be needed to treat more stubborn acne. Light therapy can reduce the amount of p. acnes on the skin. Extraction, or removal of the buildup inside the pore by your doctor, may also be needed in some cases.

If you are struggling with acne and would like to beat it once and for all, Rosenman & Leventhal, PC in Yardley, PA can help. Call (215) 321-3500 to schedule an appointment today.