Just as wrinkles start to make you feel old, zits bring you back to your youth. At least a quarter of women ages 35 to 55 have acne. Though adult acne can be the result of a hormonal imbalance (just as in your ten years), it usually flares premenstrually or during times of increased stress. It also usually crops up along the jaw, chin and neck, whereas teen acne is typically across the entire face.
Causes and Recommended Treatment
- Oil, when it gets hard in the pores, can cause plugs. Cleanse the skin to loosen existing plugs of oils, bacteria and other debris.
- Comedogenic oils can cause the oil glands to become clogged, such as Vaseline. Use oils that are not comedogenic; vitamin E, castor oil, oil of borage and wheat germ are just a few.
- Bacteria found on objects can be transmitted to one’s skin causing breakouts in that particular area. Hair products block pores around the hairline. Avoid contact with objects that might be bacteria-ridden such as phones, hands, workout clothing, dirty pillow cases. Clean objects regularly with alcohol or antibacterial wipes, where applicable.
- Oily ingredients in makeup can clog pores. Rancid oil from old makeup carries bacteria. Not removing makeup before going to bed may cause breakouts. Avoid makeup that is very heavy or that contains comedogenic oils. “Oil Free” does not mean “non-comedogenic.” Wash applicators frequently.
- Over stimulating the oil glands topically can happen when using alcohol or products that dry the skin out. Skin can be oily and still be dry (dehydrated). Avoid products that over-stimulate the oil glands. Remember that with respect to oil and hydration, balance is the key to beautiful skin.
- Scarring may occur from picking at deep (cystic) acne and forcing the substance out so that it tears the skin, leaving the tissue broken, which forms into a scar. Control the acne before it becomes a problem. Leave extractions to a professional. Chemical peelings address acne problems.
What Is Available To Treat Acne?
- Oral Medication – Accutane for the most severe cases. Outcome (one to three months) is usually good; regular blood monitoring is required. This medication is systemic and causes extreme dryness and flakiness. There may be hormonal changes that not everyone can tolerate.
- Chemical Peeling – uses acids and enzymes to unclog the pores and balance the skin’s surface. Most people require ongoing treatments, which depend on the severity of the cases, but with continuing treatments you can achieve excellent results. Superficial monthly peels help with maintenance.
- Home Care – most important because there is no such thing as a one time quick fix. Consistency of maintenance is the key to the condition of the skin (washing and hydrating). Personal hygiene is within your control and you should participate in your skin care and wellness.
Skin changes as you change, internally and externally and according to environment and climate. Awareness and good maintenance of the skin is a balance and the key to healthy and beautiful skin.