[toc]Every one of us likes to have a clear skin. Clear skin is also a sign of good health. But in today’s age of junk food, pollution and many other factors makes a teenager prone to acne. Acne is a skin blemish which results in swollen red bumps.
Causes Of Acne
Acne is the result of clogged pores i.e., tiny holes on the skin surface. Sebaceous glands become clogged with sebum, naturally occurring oil and dead skin cells. In these conditions bacterium Propionibacterium acnes can cause inflammatory lesions i.e., papules, pustules, nodules, cysts in the dermis. The other causes are hormonal i.e., menstrual cycle and puberty.
The increase in sex hormones called androgens causes the follicular glands to grow larger and make more sebum. Psychological factors such as stress cause blood glucose to rise rapidly, excess level of insulin in the blood stream lead to pore clogging cells. Diet can also trigger acne. High glycemic diet can worsen acne. It can also be genetic and due to infection.
Types Of Acne
Acne is differentiated into different types depending upon its severity.
Whiteheads are clogged pores below the surface of the skin. They create little bumps on the skin but are not inflamed. It is more flesh colored as it is below the surface of the skin and closed. They are not painful to touch and there is no redness or inflammation.
Blackheads are similar to whiteheads, but the top is open and exposed to air. The pores are blocked by keratin and sebum which gets blackened at the surface due to oxidation. It is also a non inflamed clogged pore.
When the clogged pores i.e., whiteheads or blackheads becomes inflamed then it results in papules. They usually appear in clusters. Papules are tender raised red bumps not filled with pus and are painful.
When the pus fills in the papules i.e. it gets infected, then it results in pustules. They are hard, inflamed and full of pus. Avoid touching your hands on them or squeezing them as it will result in more pustules i.e., it will worsen the condition.
Nodules And Cysts
Nodules and cysts are most severe form of acne lesions. They are much larger than papules and pustules. They are painful bumps under the skin. While nodules are hard and not filled with pus they lead to tissue destruction. Cysts are filled with pus and feel like fluid filled sacks underneath the skin. Both these types are painful and leave scar behind.
Symptoms Of Acne
Acne can be categorized into two i.e., non inflamed and inflamed. Symptoms of non inflamed acne include bumps (not red) across the skin surface but they don’t pain. They consist of microcomedones, blackheads and whiteheads. If left untreated, they may result into inflamed acne such as papules, pustules, nodules and cysts.
Those with inflamed acne will have microcomedones, blackheads, whiteheads, papules, pustules, nodules and cysts. Symptoms include redness, swelling, irritation, pain, oozing of the lesions. Cystic acne is the most serious form of inflamed acne.