What is Acne?

Acne is a common skin condition where follicles ( pores ) are clogged by sebum , a naturally occurring oil , & dead skin cells . It is characterized by non-inflammatory follicular papules or comedones and by inflammatory papules, pustules, and nodules in its more severe forms . Aside from scarring , its main effects are psychological , such as reduced self-esteem , depression or may eventually end up with suicide .


Who are mostly affected?

85 % of teenagers have acne, it is most common in adolescence mainly due to increase in male sex hormones which people of both genders tend to acquire during puberty . for most people acne diminishes over time & tend to disappear or decrease by their early twenties . however , some individuals continue to suffer from acne in their adulthood .

What areas are mostly affected?

The face & upper neck are the most commonly affected, but the chest, back & shoulders may have acne as well, this is due to the high concentration of sebaceous follicles in these regions.

What causes acne?

The reasons why some people get acne & some do not are not fully known. However, several factors are known to be linked to acne such as :
- Family /Genetic history.
- Hormonal activity , such as menstrual cycles & puberty , as the increase in male sex hormones ( androgens ) cause the sebaceous glands to get larger & make more sebum .
- Inflammation, skin irritation or scratching may activate inflammation.
- Stress, through increased output of hormones from the adrenal glands, as scientific research indicates that increased acne severity is associated with increased stress levels.
- Hyperactive sebaceous glands.
- Accumulation of dead skin cells that block or cover pores.
- Bacteria in the pores (P. acnes) which, in the presence of excess sebum, can cause inflammation of acne leading to inflammatory lesions.
- Some medications & chemical compounds can, also, cause acne.
- Diet: avoidance of junk food or any high fat & sugar content food is, also, recommended.

How is acne formed? & What are the types of acne?

A normal follicle looks like this:

For reasons no one completely understands, follicles, often called pores, sometimes get blocked. Sebum (oil) which normally drains to the surface gets blocked and bacteria begins to grow. Both whiteheads and blackheads start out as a microcomedone. The picture below is a microcomedone:

There are two types of acne:

1-Non-inflammatory acne

Microcomedones become non-inflamed skin blemishes called comedones--either a whitehead or a blackhead:

whitehead

When the trapped sebum and bacteria stay below the skin surface, a whitehead is formed. Whiteheads may show up as tiny white spots, or they may be so small that they are invisible to the naked eye.


Blackhead

A blackhead occurs when the pore opens to the surface,and the sebum, which contains the skin pigment melanin, oxidizes and turns a brown/black color. It is not dirt and can not be washed away. Blackheads can last for a long time because the contents very slowly drain to the surface.

2-Inflammatory acne

A papule occurs when there is a break in the follicular wall. White blood cells rush in and the pore becomes inflamed.

Papule

Pustule

A pustule forms several days later when white blood cells make their way to the surface of the skin. This is what people usually refer to as a "zit" or a "pimple".

Nodule

An inflamed lesion can sometimes completely collapse or explode, severely inflaming the surrounding skin, and sometimes engulfing neighboring follicles. These lesions are called nodules or cysts:



When a follicle breaks along the bottom, total collapse can occur, causing a large, inflamed bump that can be sore to the touch.

Sometimes a severe inflammatory reaction can result in very large pus filled lesions.

How can I get rid of my acne?

Acne treatments are believed to work in at least 4 different ways :
1 – keratolytic (exfoliating) action to remove dead skin cells & normalizing shedding of pores to prevent clogging of them .
2 – killing (P.acnes) bacteria which is responsible for the inflammation of acne .
3 – anti-inflammatory action to reduce pain & inflammation associated with acne .
4 – hormonal manipulation (for females) .

How can KLEER WASH of KARISMAL help me?