Severe Back Acne
Acne is most commonly associated with the face, but acne.org explains that it can show up on other areas, including the back. Some cases of back acne can be severe because the lesions can be continually irritated by clothing and sweat. Fortunately, there are treatment options to reduce or cure severe back acne and steps to take that can prevent future outbreaks.
Acne is a skin condition characterized by outbreaks of pimples, blackheads and other skin lesions, acne-resource.org explains. It can appear on any body area except the soles of the feet and palms of the hands, according to acne.org, because those two areas do not have sebaceous follicles. Acne forms in those follicles, so it cannot appear in places where they are absent.
Back acne has the same cause as other acne types. According to acne-resource.org, follicles become clogged with excess oil and dead skin cells, which triggers an outbreak. Acne.org states that back acne may also have a genetic component, as people whose parents had it are more likely to develop it themselves. Back acne may become severe, because the back is usually covered with clothing, and continual rubbing can irritate the affected skin. Sweat from working out or being in warm areas can make it worse.
Teenagers commonly develop acne, but acne-resource.org states that severe back acne affects a wide age range. It usually appears in people between the ages of 10 and 40, although older individuals can get it as well.
You may be able to prevent back acne from becoming too severe by protecting it from irritation, acne.org advises. You can do this by wearing fabrics that breathe, such as cotton, and changing clothing frequently, especially if garments become damp with sweat. Showering off sweat is also a good preventative measure, according to acne.org.
Severe back acne is often treated with skin cleansing, followed by an application of 2.5 percent benzoyl peroxide and 10 percent alpha hydroxy acid, according to acne.org. If the back acne resists this treatment, or if it is extremely widespread or causing scars, it may need treatment by a physician. Many doctors will prescribe an oral medication called Accutane for the most stubborn cases.
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