Acne is a skin condition that affects individuals with oily skin especially children, teenagers and young adults. It is characterized by cysts or pimples such as blackheads and whiteheads. Acne results when skin oils accumulate below keratin plugs in the openings of the hair follicles and oil glands. These plugs get clogged with irritating secretions and bacteria.
Acne can be caused by any of the following:
- Increases in hormone levels during puberty, menstruation or pregnancy
- Taking medication such as birth control pills, anti depressant medication such as lithium or steroids
Acne can be treated or avoided in one or more of the following ways:
- washing often with a warm washcloth and soap several times a day. An abrasive soap or scrub is more effective than plain soap.
- Using medication containing benzoyl peroxide for mild acne
- Avoiding oily greases and creams on the skin
- Men should soften their beard before shaving and also not shave against the grain
- See a doctor about prescribing an antibiotic