What is acne?
Acne is one of the most common reasons why young people visit beauty salons and dermatologists to solve their skin problems. It is important to consult a specialist – in this case, a qualified dermatologist – in the first instance.
Acne is a skin condition which tends to start in adolescence, when hormonal changes cause an increased activity of sebaceous glands, which may in turn lead to the so-called seborrhoeic dermatitis or seborrhoea.
The most obvious and apparent acne symptoms include a variety of blackheads, whiteheads and pinheads, commonly referred to as pimples. They result from seborrhoea and the excessive cornification of skin cells. The blockage of the sebaceous duct leads to the accumulation of secretion within the gland.
When not inflamed, blocked sebaceous glands form white pimples or whiteheads. While not very irritating, they should not be ignored. Neglecting your skin will backfire sooner or later. Once bacteria start to proliferate within the gland, an inflammatory response occurs which may lead to unsightly or even painful skin blemishes - pimples.
Young people find acne extremely uncomfortable, as skin problems on the face may significantly reduce one's self-esteem. A person suffering from acne, ashamed of their condition, becomes more and more alienated from family and friends.
Untreated acne may cause permanent acne scars. This is why the treatment should be applied at an early stage: as soon as the first symptoms appear, so that the face is not disfigured with scars in the future and a healthy skin appearance is restored as soon as possible.
There is a growing incidence of acne in post-adolescent women. Approximately 15% of women continue to suffer from the condition after passing adolescence, while 24% have the so-called physiological acne, which occurs during hormonal fluctuations related to menstruation. This problem is termed adult acne.
- has a persistent and chronic character
- tends to occur in the lower facial area (the chin), the neck and the back
- involves more extensive, painful and persistent lesions than adolescent acne
- commonly occurs prior to the menstrual period
Causes of adult acne include:
- hormonal fluctuation – especially during the menstrual period, pregnancy or menopause, but also associated with other issues (e.g. eating disorders)
- stress – a high level of stress has a negative effect on skin appearance
- environmental pollution – affects the level of hormones, especially androgens
For adolescent girls, pimples may turn into a real disaster, especially if they “pop up” a day before a party or a date. The term 'pimples' is loosely applied to a variety of spots, pinheads and blackheads which appear on the skin, most commonly in the face area. The occurrence of pimples may indicate a hormonal disturbance in the body. They result from an excessive cornification of skin cells.
Acne scars are very visible skin blemishes and commonly occur due to scratching or squeezing pimples. Typically, acne scarring comes in the form of depressions and has a different colour than the surrounding skin. It tends to occur in the dermis, a deep layer of the skin protected by the epidermis, rather than on the skin surface. It can appear on the face, the back, the neckline and other areas affected by acne lesions. These unsightly scars come in various shapes and depths. Some fade away a few weeks or months after the pimple disappears, whereas others stay for years.