Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

Pimples & Tooth Paste

Pimples & Tooth Paste

Overview

From oatmeal to lemon juice there are tons of ingredients you can find in your very own home that many think will help get rid of dreaded and unsightly pimples. A number of age-old techniques promise to make pimples disappear overnight. Sometimes they work; however, sometimes they only make matters worse. Toothpaste is a popular home remedy for pimples, but experts advise not to try it.

Cause of Pimples

Your skin is covered with hair follicles called pores. These pores contain sebaceous glands, which release an oily substance called sebum. Sebum moisturizes the skin, prevents water loss and protects it from bacteria. An overproduction of sebum along with the accumulation of dead skin and bacteria can clog your pores, giving rise to whiteheads, blackheads and pimples. According to the Mayo Clinic, effective acne treatments work by fighting infection, reducing inflammation and slowing the production of oil.

Toothpaste and Pimples

According to an article published in the "Los Angeles Times," home remedies like tooth paste for acne fascinate people because they are more aware of what is in them and because they are often much cheaper than medications. Toothpaste has become a popular remedy for pimples because it can absorb oil. Proponents of the toothpaste acne treatment advise that you dab a small amount of non-gel, non-whitening toothpaste, let it dry then rinse and wipe off any remaining toothpaste to help achieve blemish-free skin.

Ingredients in Toothpaste

According to the American Dental Association, most toothpastes have humectants, which prevent water loss. Examples of humectants include glycerol, propylene, glycol and sorbitol. The Mayo Clinic notes that humectants are also used in moisturizers to soften thickened or scaly skin. Most toothpastes also have detergents that include the surfactant sodium lauryl sulfate to create foaming action while brushing. According to an article published in the "Journal of Skin Pharmacology and Physiology," sodium lauryl sulfate can irritate the skin if left on for more than an hour.

Considerations

Most toothpastes contain a mild abrasive designed to remove debris and stains on the surface of your teeth. These abrasives are not meant to be put and left on your skin, so it is possible that they can cause damage. Many of the different kinds of toothpaste on the market these days now have stronger active ingredients and many other added ingredients. These ingredients also may irritate the skin, leaving the affected area red, inflamed and possibly worse than before.

Alternatives

Salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide are the most widely used topical treatments for pimples. To help manage and prevent acne, wash your face gently with a mild cleanser. Excessive scrubbing with strong cleansers can irritate your skin and make pimples worse. Drink plenty of water, manage stress levels and limit the amount of high-starch foods in your diet to help keep your acne under control. If having trouble managing your acne, consult a dermatologist to determine which potential treatment is best for you.

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