Acne Skin Care Treatment
Acne, also called acne vulgaris, is a skin disorder caused by the skin’s oil glands producing too much sebum, a fatty substance that our bodies make to keep our skin from drying out. The pores in the skin become clogged with this excess oil, resulting in outbreaks of skin lesions, or pimples. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, between 40 and 50 million Americans suffer with acne. There are many treatments for acne but no known cure.
Why Treat Acne?
Acne can can affect adolescents when they are developing their personalities and when peer pressure and social acceptance is extremely important to them. In addition to the psychological effects, some of the more severe cases of acne can be physically painful and need to be treated in order to improve.
Taking care of your skin is the first step in the day-to-day treatment of acne. The following steps should be taken to lessen the effects of acne: Gently clean your skin with a mild soap or cleaner twice daily; shampoo your hair daily, especially if it’s oily; do not squeeze, scratch or pick pimples; avoid getting sunburned; avoid greasy cosmetics and creams—choose products labeled “non-comedogenic” or “non-acnegenic.”
Along with daily cleansing with mild soap and water, some over-the-counter products can be beneficial for acne. These products may contain benzoyl peroxide, sulfur, resorcinol--an antiseptic, or salicylic acid, which works as an exfoliant. Side effects of some of these products can be dry skin and skin irritation. An oil-free moisturizer can be used to help with these problems. Consult a dermatologist if over-the-counter medications don’t work.
A number of acne treatments are available through your physician. Treatment options include oral and topical prescriptions, laser treatments, dermabrasion and microdermabrasion, chemical peels, injections and surgery. Since each person is different, no single treatment plan is right for everyone. Work with your physician to determine the best course of treatment for you.
What Not To Do
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, don’t wash or scrub your skin excessively, as this could irritate your skin, making your acne worse. Avoid cosmetics, skin creams and sunscreens that contain oil, as excess oil could clog the pores. Look for “non-comedogenic” or “non-acnegenic” products instead. Make sure to wash makeup off at night. When using hair products, keep them off your face to avoid skin irritation. Try to avoid things that rub or irritate the skin. Stay out of the sun.
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