Acne, known in medical terminology as Acne vulgaris, is basically a skin condition that entails the oil glands at the hair follicles' base. This condition generally occurs at puberty stage when the oil (sebaceous) glands become active. These glands are actually invigorated by male hormones that are made by the adrenal glands in males as well as females.
Basically a skin disease, acne is marked by skin inflammation as well as erupting lesions. This is a widespread skin condition, especially among people in adolescence. In fact, most of the people experience this condition at some point or other during the peak of their life. Interestingly, there are numerous myths about the factors responsible for as well as cures of acne. In present times, a huge industry has come up and is surviving on manufacturing and selling products that are meant to prevent as well as cure acne. Elma 04 is our take on the acne issue and excels in the treatment and prevention of acne, particularly among teenagers.
In order to have a clear understanding about acne, it is important that you basically comprehend what the hair follicle actually look like. Precisely speaking, the hair follicle lies buried in the skin. In other words, a hair grows out of the skin penetrating the surface of the skin - which is the hair follicle. The hair follicle is attached to sebaceous gland that makes oil called sebum. This particular oil is responsible for keeping our skin healthy. We develop acne when, for reasons unknown, the hair follicle is congested and this oil or sebum accumulates below the surface of the skin. When the environment is favourable, bacteria begin to grow, sooner or later giving rise to pimples.
Despite the fact that several people believe that acne is simply a reddish skin eruption to be simply a pimple or zit, this skin condition also has a number of non-inflamed forms, such as comedones. In fact, comedones occur in two different forms - whiteheads and blackheads. One develops a whitehead when a bacterial mass and sebum form at any congested hair follicle and remain beneath the skin surface. A whitehead may by very small in size, at times even indistinguishable to the naked eye. On the other hand, a blackhead occurs when the mass of sebum and bacteria erupts and emerges on the surface of the skin, thereby permitting the melanin in the sebum to be oxidized and turn black.
In an ideal condition, these non-inflamed types of acne sooner or later drain out the sebum and bacteria build-up beneath the skin to the surface and it helps to heal the skin by itself. However, usually, the internal lining of the follicles burst either owing to pressure from inside or, in most cases, due to pricking the skin. When this happens, erythrocytes or white blood cells drain out into the follicle that is engorged from before to fight against the bacteria. As a result, the acne is inflamed in the substance that is medically termed as papule.
Even at this stage, the acne is mostly under the skin and despite the naked eyes is able to see it. In fact what is visible to the naked eye is an irritated part of the skin, which is often mistaken by most people as a pimple. Such pimples occur when the erythrocytes are actually combating the bacteria in order to emerge to the skin surface to erupt into a large white or maybe a whitish-yellow protuberance. In fact, acute cases of acne may result in intense inflammation as nodules or cysts too.
Even now neither researchers nor physicians have been able to understand acne completely or what factors are responsible for the occurrence of this skin condition. From the traditional point of view, many were of the belief that specific foods, particularly greasy foods or chocolates, were responsible for pimples. However, findings of nearly all studies undertaken on the subject have revealed that this is not the case. You can treat acne with several creams and lotions, most of them enclosing either salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. However, one of the most excellent means to cure this skin condition is to just to wash your face with any gentle soap and warm water on a regular basis. Doing this will largely help to lessen the quantity of oil present on the facial skin. In fact, presence of such oils on the skin may cause to block the hair follicles and thereby stop build-up of sebum and bacteria.
While acne is not a dangerous condition, it can certainly leave ugly scars on the skin. To understand this, you need to first know that the human skin comprises numerous pores or minute holes that actually connect to the oil glands producing sebum just beneath the skin surface. Sebum, produced by these glands, is basically an oily substance and it helps to transport the dead skin cells from under the skin surface to the surface via the follicles. A tiny hair emerges from the follicle of our skin. It is worth noting that pimples usually occur when these follicles are blocked or congested. As a result there is a build-up of oil and sometimes even bacteria beneath the skin surface.
Actually, none is completely sure about the factors that are responsible for causing acne. Several experts or dermatologists are of the view that the main reason for acne is an increase in the levels of androgen, which is basically a hormone. Usually, the levels of androgen in the human body increases when they attain adolescent. Increased levels of androgen promote the development of the oil glands beneath the skin and, in turn, the distended glands make more and more oil or sebum. Often, accumulation of too much of sebum beneath the skin may force the cellular walls in the skin pores to break down. This, in fact, results in bacterial growth.
Findings of some studies into the subject of acne have hinted that vulnerability to this skin condition may also be hereditary or genetic. A number of medications containing lithium and androgen may be responsible for acne. In addition, using wrong cosmetics may cause acne in some people, especially those who are vulnerable to this skin condition. Moreover, women undergo hormone changes during pregnancy and this may often be responsible for occurrence of acne. In fact, it has been observed that pregnant women may experience acne for the first time or it may recur in them during this period.
The lesions that occur in acne vulgaris are of various types; the most common ones are discussed briefly below.
Blackheads: Usually blackheads form when a hair follicle pore is partially congested or blocked. Sebum or oil, bacteria and dead skin that are trapped beneath the skin gradually drain out to the skin's surface to develop into blackheads. These eruptions have a black color owing to the melanin present in the skin. In this case, melanin reacts with oxygen giving the affected area a black color. Compared to whiteheads, it takes a longer time for blackheads to get cleared.
Whiteheads: Whiteheads occur when a skin pore or hair follicle is completely blocked. In this case, the sebum or oil, bacteria as well as the dead skin cells that are trapped underneath the skin surface result in the formation of a white head on the surface of the skin. Usually, whiteheads are treated using non-prescription or over-the-counter medications meant for healing acne.
Papules: These are small reddish, inflamed swellings on the skin that are not only painful, but also not have any heads that are called pimples. Even when you squeeze a papule, it won't help to get respite from them earlier. On the contrary, such acts may leave a permanent scarring.
Pustules: These are possibly the most widespread type of acne lacerations or lesions. Generally, pustules appear in the form of an inflamed reddish circle having a whitish or yellow center. You can pop the pustules at home, but people suffering from acne should never touch them using their bare hands. In fact, they need to ensure that they always touch pustules or the skin in their region with sterile materials. At the same time, it is worth mentioning here that acne medications are likely to be more effectual when the pustules have actually popped.
Nodules: When an individual suffers from severe cases of acne, they are likely to endure nodules. Actually, acne nodules are firm bumps that occur beneath the skin and they may be large in size too. Some nodules may remain for as long as six months. One of the most common as well as the worst after effects of nodular acne is scarring. Hence, it is advisable that if you are already suffering from nodular acne, you should essentially consult an experienced dermatologist for appropriate treatment and also ensure that no scars are left after you get rid of them.