Acne can be maddening, and those whom suffer from it often wonder how to prevent acne. We’ve all seen those advertisements, where a girl or boy with such clear skin that it glows, claims that Bioxelan, Clearasil, etc, cleared that one pimple they suffered from 24 hours ago. Even though these ads are incredibly annoying, you cannot wonder: do these work? To know how to prevent acne we need to know what causes it.
What Causes Acne
Acne is essentially caused by androgenic hormones; think testosterone. They are steroid hormones that peak during your adolescent years and cause the sebum, the oil produced by your skin, to build up around your neck, face, back, chest, shoulders and whatever pleasant places your acne loves to lurk. Acne is known to last until one’s 30s and even their 40s, if you’re this unfortunate; this is more common in women though.
So, what causes those blackheads, pimples and cysts?
The simple answer is what they tell you in those ads: oil, bacteria and blocked pores result in blackheads, pimples and cysts. However, cysts do not produce a defined black or white head like pimples, they remain red. Cysts are lumps of pus and other tissue that lie under the skin instead. Therefore, treatment for them is based on hormone regulation, however, we’ll come back to later.
How To Prevent Acne and Blackheads
Essentially there is no cure for acne, there are just preventatives. These preventatives are nothing short of what those ProActive and Clearasil ads tell you subliminally: wash your face twice a day. This clears your pores of any possible blockages and acts as pimple and blackhead preventative.
For girls, choose water-based and oil-free makeup to avoid clogging your pores as well. And yes, what your mother told you is right, don’t scratch, squeeze, or pick at your pimples. Bacteria from underneath your nails may re-infect them, worsen the infection or worse, cause scarring. This is how you get rid of acne, the ones on the surface at least.
Hormone treatment is truly the best method to get rid of acne caused by cysts – cysts are the most common form of pimples one suffers from when they’ve got acne. Red, itchy and irritable they are caused by the fluctuating levels of hormones within your body and for girls, they worsen around your period.
Yes, a healthy hygiene routine helps, but the main regulator is the amount of stress placed upon your body. The more stress placed upon your body, the more hormones your body releases to deal with this stress. Does this explain the higher frequency of acne outbreaks before or during exams?
Another way to ease this stress is to have a healthy lifestyle. Think, a low GI diet, or avoiding having chocolate, hot chips, Doritos every day. It places less physiological stress upon your body, and less stress equals less pimples.
So there you have it folks, even though it’s no cure, it’s a concise method of how to prevent acne before it even starts. If it’s any consolation, by the time you’re 23 you’ll be relatively clear of it, then you’ll be wondering why you even stressed about it so much at the time.