Acne affects as many as 45 million people, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. This skin condition is characterized by acne lesions, including whiteheads, blackheads, pimples, pustules and papules. Although each lesion is the result of inflammation in the pore's walls, papules may appear to be different because they do not contain pus or sebum.
Papular acne is a form of inflammatory acne. This means that the walls of the pores have become infected with bacteria, which results in a number of skin lesions, including papules, blackheads, whiteheads and nodules, according to acne.org. Papules specifically result from white blood cells coming into the pore, which results in inflammation.
Unlike typical acne blemishes, acne papules are do not appear to have a head or contain pus. The areas tend to be hardened, raised and pink or red due to inflammation, according to acne.org. The papules are less than 1 centimeter in diameter and may be crusty or scaling in appearance, according to the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Papules can often be mistaken for a rash or eczema, but are often longer-lasting than either condition.
While it may be tempting to squeeze a papule, squeezing will only encourage scarring, according to acne.org. This is because papules do not contain pus, sebum or other material. By squeezing or picking at the skin, you can damage the collagen and elastin fibers underneath the epidermal layers of skin.
Treatments for papular acne aim to reduce the inflammation that is the underlying cause of the condition. The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends washing the face twice daily with a mild cleanser. You can then apply a lotion that contains an acne-fighting ingredient, such as benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. If these treatments do not prove effective, a dermatologist may be able to prescribe a stronger treatment.
Because acne papules are the result of a buildup of bacteria and white blood cells, it may take months of treatment in order to completely eradicate this matter from the pore and reduce inflammation. Choosing an effective papule treatment regimen and steadily following it on a daily basis can help you experience success.
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