We’ve all been there; you are worrying about an important presentation you have to give tomorrow morning at work, only to wake up with an embarrassing blemish. Tonight is a first date and you were feeling really great, until you noticed the new zit that just appeared. You recently celebrated your 30th birthday and are excited about starting a new chapter, only to begin struggling with break outs for the first time in your life. No matter what name it hides behind, acne is an embarrassing and even debilitating skin condition that affects a majority of the population at some point in their lives.
Leaving behind emotional and physical scars acne can seriously change the way a person socializes and feels about themselves. Leading us to ask…
What is acne?
Acne consists of blackheads, whiteheads, red bumps, pustules, and sometimes deeper boil-like spots called cysts or nodules. Most commonly appearing on the face, acne occurs anywhere that oil glands are numerous. Other common areas susceptible to acne breakouts are the back, chest, shoulders and neck.
While it is not curable, acne is treatable and visiting a dermatologist is the first step in getting acne under control and eventually into remission.
Because it commonly appears in teens going through puberty, many make the serious mistake of “waiting out” acne. Even when briefly affected, not treating the disease can have life long consequences. Properly treating and preventing acne now means less of a chance to experience it later in life.
What are the treatment options?
At the Soderstrom Skin Institute we believe no two patients are alike. Assessing acne on a case to case basis is a critical part of successfully treating the condition. Additionally, treatment times can vary and some patients may need treatment for a few months while for others treatment is necessary for a few years.
The good news is that in the fight against acne, medicine is on your side! Modern advances within the medical field give today’s patient more treatment options than ever before. Some of the highly advanced and specialized methods of acne treatment include: cleansing facials, soaks, antibiotics, hormones and birth control pills, topical creams, acne surgery to remove blackheads, ultraviolet light, intralesional injections, and more. Incorporating special glycolic facial peel treatments can also help cleanse the skin and exfoliate dead cells, making it an effective method for clearing acne-prone skin.
Many of these treatment options are offered by Soderstrom Skin Institute and are administered by highly trained medical professionals.
What else should I know?
While it is important to properly treat acne, there are daily tips to follow that can seriously reduce flare-ups. Cosmetics play an important role in the prevention and control of acne, and choosing a product line that compliments a patient’s skin is vital. It is ideal for individuals to use a product especially designed to prevent acne flare-ups. When looking, patients should choose non-irritant lines that are water-based and oil-free such as Skin Dimensions Simply Beautiful Makeup.
There are many common misconceptions about acne out there. Here are some myths and truths that can help when trying to understand the condition.
“Eating chocolate causes your skin to break out.”
Myth: Chocolate and greasy foods have proved to have little to no effect on the development or course of acne.
“My skin must be dirty because I have acne.”
Myth: Acne is not a disease caused by dirt and some individuals go to extremes in scrubbing their skin. Since the oil plug starts much deeper, this is of little use and can actually irritate your skin.
“Only teenagers get acne.”
Myth: Although the majority of patients with acne are teenagers, at least 10 percent of acne patients are adults. Acne can affect anyone and is linked to hormones, not age.
“I got my acne from my parent(s)”
Truth: Heredity plays and important role in the acne process. The size and activity of the oil glands are dictated by DNA. If your parents both had problems with acne, you are also more likely to experience it throughout your life.
“Stress can have an affect on acne.”
Truth: Stress has been directly linked to acne flares. Acne may also be aggravated by lack of sleep, rubbing, friction, excessive sweating and picking or squeezing the plugged pores.
“Certain medicines can cause acne.”
Truth: The list of drugs aggravating acne is a long one. Corticosteroids in high doses produce enlargement of the oil glands. Certain hormonal drugs, such as testosterone and progesterone in birth control pills, have a tendency to aggravate acne. Other aggravating agents are lodides and bromides which are found in certain vitamin and mineral preparations, sedatives, asthma medications and cold remedies, Phenobarbital and others.
To schedule an appointment with a board certified dermatologist at Soderstrom Skin Institute, call 1-888-970-7546.