Although acne is a common and treatable condition, severe acne can cause severe physical, emotional and social problems. Acne starts in the hair follicles of your skin with a substance called sebum. Sebum is an oily substance produced by the skin to keep it flexible and moisturized. Sometimes, this sebum can become thick and sticky. Sebum combines with dead skin cells to plug up your hair follicles. When these follicles are closed, you develop whiteheads. When they are open, you develop blackheads. These plugged-up pores are an ideal place for bacteria to grow. As the bacteria multiply and finally erupt out onto the surface of the skin, they cause swelling, redness, and pus; better known as pimples. These pimples can then become even more infected, causing deeper lumps, nodules, or cysts.
You should also know that your chances for developing acne are increased by hereditary conditions, such as larger than average pores, or overproduction of skin oils. One reason teenagers can get severe acne is that hormones called androgens, which are more active in your body during puberty, can also make the skin produce more oil. Menstruation also can bring on acne or make it worse. Finally, emotional stress, oil and grease from cosmetics, and medicines such as cortisone and barbiturates can work against your favor in dealing with acne.
North Idaho Dermatology providers are skilled at helping you discover and implement a variety of options for effective acne treatment to reduce the consequences of this skin condition.