About 80% of people between the ages of 11 and 30 have acne outbreaks. While acne is most common during adolescence, many adults experience outbreaks, especially women between the ages of 30 and 50.
Acne is usually associated with classic pimples, but the term includes all of the different blemishes that appear:
Your local pharmacy has an overwhelming selection of products for treating acne, which may be all you need for a mild case. But please contact Alpine Dermatology Clinic for a consultation if the outbreaks are severe or you see swelling. Acne can lead to scarring and skin discoloration if it’s not properly treated. A professional exam is also important because persistent acne may be a symptom of another skin condition like rosacea.
Acne starts deep in the hair follicle, where sebaceous glands secrete oil that lubricates skin and hair. Oil and dead skin cells normally flow up and out of the hair follicle, but when they accumulate and get trapped inside the follicle, acne occurs. When bacteria that lives on your skin gets mixed in with the backed-up oil and skin debris, inflammation develops that eventually causes papules, pustules and nodules.
Following a regular skin care routine is the first step for preventing and treating acne. The key is to clean skin gently. Don’t scrub too vigorously and avoid harsh products because they might irritate your skin and make the problem worse. Dr. Marshall will be glad to recommend products and give you tips on skin care.
Acne treatment often begins with topical medications that kill bacteria, relieve inflammation, and reduce oil. After a thorough examination, the doctor has many possible medications available and will choose the treatment that’s best for your skin type and the severity of your acne. Large cysts may have to be removed by the doctor if they don’t respond to medication. For severe acne, Dr. Marshall may prescribe isotretinoin (Accutane). When that’s the best choice, he protects your health by joining the iPLEDGE™ program.
There’s another advantage to consulting Dr. Marshall when you have acne: He offers a variety of safe aesthetic procedures that may help treat acne, remove blackheads, and diminish acne scars. Contact Alpine Dermatology Clinic so we can answer your questions and start treatment to give you back a clear complexion.