Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

How Is Acne Formed?

How Is Acne Formed? How Is Acne Formed?

Clogged Pores

According to the National Institutes of Health, acne is formed when tiny holes on the surface of the skin (pores) become clogged. A pore is an opening to a canal called a follicle. A follicle consists of a hair and an oil gland. Under normal conditions, oil glands maintain a normal balance of oil while removing dead skin cells. If these glands overproduce oil, pores can become blocked with bacteria, dirt and other debris. According to the Mayo Clinic, over-cleansing your skin with harsh soaps can worsen acne. Gently washing the skin to remove excess oil and old skin cells is all that's necessary. Acne is most apt to develop on the face, neck, chest, back and shoulders. These areas of the body have the greatest number of functional oil glands.

Pimples, Blackheads & Whiteheads

According to Kids Health.org., when a pore becomes clogged and protrudes from the skin, it's called a whitehead. When a blocked pore remains open, the top surface darkens and it's referred to as a blackhead. When the outer rings of the pores are broken, bacteria and dead skin cells get under the skin. This causes blocked hair follicles to become inflamed and a small, infected, raised red spot called a pimple develops.

Cysts

The NIH says that when inflammation is deep inside your skin, a pimple may grow larger and become a firm cyst. Cysts are painful, pus-filled lumps. These boil-like infections leave scarring.

Hormonal Factors

The Mayo Clinic says that because hormones are a major factor in the development of acne, it's common among adolescents. In fact, the NIH says three of four teenagers have at least some problems with acne. Nevertheless, people of all ages can suffer from pimples, blackheads and whiteheads. For example, pregnant women may develop acne as a result of the hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy.

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