Acne is one single skin ailment which alone can surmount the barrier of age: sex, and racial discrimination and ruin one’s social well being and state of mind without inflicting any life threat. The tricky and varied nature and type of acne has made this disease more difficult and unpredictable. With an ocean of antiacne products, drugs, and medicines flooding the market, surprisingly and unbelievably there is yet no foolproof and permanent cure available that can assure a definite healing process. Nevertheless, a close overview of its characteristics and forms can help one develop a concept of how to formulate some regimen or medicine in order to restrain and prevent its appearance.
How Acne Forms
An excessive secretion of sebum or body oil is believed to be the chief reason behind the most common type of acne formation. Oil glands which are embedded deep within the hair follicles under the epidermal layer of the skin get over active due to hormonal imbalance or other reasons. This, accompanied with faulty exfoliation of the dead skin cells, results in clogging of the skin pores or follicles trapping the discharged sebum inside it. Situation gets worse with the presence of the bacterial organisms called Propionibacterium acnes within the clogged follicles. These microorganisms cause inflammation, feed on the entrapped sebum, and proliferate there giving rise to larger and painful acne cysts.
Acne Vulgaris: Common acne: also known as acne vulgaris, has been categorized into several subtypes on the basis of its formation and extent of severin’.
Blackheads and Whiteheads: Blackheads and whiteheads are relatively mild type of acne. When the skin pores are entirely blocked by the dead skin cells, the P. acnes bacteria within it breaks the trapped sebum into free fatty acid. Free fatty acid is a very irritant substance that causes swelling and pus formation. These are called whiteheads or closed comedones.
Sometimes the pores are partially blocked and the over secretion of oil inside the skin pores stick up with the dead skin cells around the follicle lining, thereby resulting into a relatively thick and solid substance, darker in color, which is known as blackheads or open comedones.
- Papules: Slightly larger, tender, and red or pink blemishes which are most often found to be inflamed are called papules. This type of acne is potentially risky to be picked or popped since they can turn into larger and painful cysts with some possibility of scarring.
- Pustules: Pustules are much like whiteheads, but with greater inflammation, larger size, and a visible center filled with pus. They are generally red in color at their base.
- Nodules: Nodules are larger and more deep seated than pustules. These lesions are characterized by painful, firm, and solid lumps filled with pus.
- Cysts: Acne cysts or cystic acne is the most severe and persistent type of acne. These large inflamed lesions are oftentimes playing as the most influential threat behind acne scar. More often than not, it is found that cystic acne is the outcome of popping or squeezing pus filled and inflamed smaller comedones.
Other than this most common form of acne or acne vulgaris, there are other acne types as well out of which the most discussed one is acne rosacea. Acne rosacea is found in middle-age adults. Presence of inflamed lumps on different portions of the face accompanied by redness is the basic feature of acne rosacea. A prolonged impact of this acne type might result in thickening of the nasal skin. As with acne vulgaris, there is no definite cause of acne rosacea. However, it is believed that too much consumption of hot beverages and alcoholic drinks might be some major prominent factors behind this ty pe of acne formation.
Acne fulmmans, pyroderma faciale etc. are a few other severe acne types which are also typified by their destructive nature. Acne fulminans might give rise to ulceration and fever whereas pyroderma faciale which are atypical to women might cause severe cysts and sinus tracks.
Treatment and medication of acne depends on their type to a large extent. Certain over-the-counter medications like benzoyl peroxide are commonly used for nonsensitive skin types. However, stubborn and persistent cases are treated in doctor’s office using a broad range of medicines and even surgical procedure if necessary. Apart from treatment and medication, a few easy steps of daily habits of cleanliness, bowel movement, and hygienic diet could be followed in order to prevent acne formation considerably.