Prepubescent acne is not uncommon, but it's not typical, either. The reason is because acne is caused by the sebaceous glands, which are glands that produce oils. Before puberty, these glands aren't even active. If your preteen has the occasion pimple, it's nothing to get concerned about, especially if she's very active and sweats a lot. Pimples are often caused by friction caused by certain materials rubbing against the skin. Consult with a pediatrician if your child is having chronic breakouts.
Prepubescent acne can be caused by disease or other treatable conditions. Some disorders responsible for acne in children include early onset of puberty, an endocrine disorder and a hormone-producing tumor. There are also some medications responsible for childhood breakouts such as those prescribed to treat epilepsy, steroids and some antidepressants.
Anderson Hills Pediatrics, a medical practice in Ohio, reports that 40 percent of children between the ages of 8 and 10 years start developing some acne. One reason children at this early age may start developing acne is genetic. If one or both parents started breaking out at an early age, it's perfectly normal for a young child to break out as well.
How to Treat Acne
Children won't know how to take care of their skin unless you teach them. If you show your child how to treat acne by washing the face at least twice a day, using an exfoliator two or three times a week and applying benzoyl peroxide to blemishes, the acne should be kept under control.
What Won't Cure Acne
Your preteen practically lives on pizza, chocolate and French fries. Don't get taken in by the myth that food can cause acne. Unless your teen is obese, if he's not exercising or otherwise in bad health, having some fast food and chocolate once in a while won't cause breakouts, and removing these items from his diet won't clear his acne either.
When to Be Concerned
If your child's acne is chronic or if the blemishes are large like boils, raised, look infected or begin to scar, see a pediatrician. There could be underlying reasons why such a young person has acne this badly. If your child is only experiencing an early onset of puberty, medications such as Retin-A and antibiotics can control severe acne.
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