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18 Feb 2016

Fear no more, adult acne can be treated

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The scourge of teen years can follow…

You well into adulthood

The good news is that there are many options available to treat the condition.

Adult acne treatment

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles
at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

According to Nu Skin Enterprises Inc. acne affects people regardless of age, gender or race. Over 60 million Americans have active acne and 20 percent of whom are adults.

Dr. Andre Cambio MD, FAAD and Medical Director of Cambio Dermatology in Cape Coral states adult acne is due to the disruption of the hormonal balance. This usually happens when the male hormones (androgens) take over leading to an increase in oil production of the skin and causing oil buildup in the hair follicles, inflammation and bacterial overgrowth. Occasionally, acne is caused by an internal disease or medication.

Acne can be classified as mild, moderate or severe. It can also be classified as ‘comedonal” referring to white heads “closed comedones” and black heads (“open comedones”) or “inflammatory” (referring to the red bumps “papules” pus-containing red bumps “pustules” deep painful bumps “cysts” and scarring.

Most types of adult acne have both “comedonal” and “inflammatory” components.

Cambio said that the over the counter topical agents containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid can be effective.

If the acne is stubborn, a visit to the dermatologist for a prescription medication may be necessary. Most adult acne is treated with combinations of topical agents such as washes, gels, creams or oral antibiotics.

“Cystic acne is often effectively treated with the use of cortisone injected directly into the cyst. Oral contraceptives are often used to help restore a more normal hormonal balance,” Cambio said.

Chemical peels, laser, photodynamic therapy, microdermabrasion and manual extraction of comedones can be used with topical agents and prescriptive medications to help control breakouts.

Cambio said that some patients report that their acne improves with sunlight as the sun is a natural anti-inflammatory.

“However, sunlight can cause some individuals to breakout even more due to the increased perspiration and oils that collect on the skin. The sun can also cause skin cancer, pre-cancers, premature aging and wrinkles so the regular use of an oil free sunscreen is very important,” she said.

The use of oil-free sun screen helps with the hyperpigmentation that may accompany acne. Prescription bleaching creams, chemical peels and microdermabrasion can also improve the condition.

The best makeup choices for acneic skin would be powder foundations instead of liquid foundations labeled “oil free” “acne free” or “non-comedogenic.”

“As acne can be a potentially scarring condition, resist the urge to pick at lesions. Early treatments will keep the breakouts in control,” Cambio said.

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