is the term for pimples and complexion problems that
occur in many young people and some adults. Approximately
90% of all people will have acne at some point in their
lives. Pimples usually occur on the face, but may extend
to the neck, chest, upper arms, back and legs. Acne
is only a skin
problem and does not affect your general health.
Acne usually begins at puberty and
may continue for many years. Teenagers get acne
as the body matures and produces hormones that stimulate
the sebaceous (oil producing) skin glands to make more
sebum, or oil. Sebum lubricates the skin. Sebaceous
glands within the hair follicles, or pores, become plugged
when oil secretion occurs faster than the oil and skin
cells can exit the pores. Sometimes the plug causes
the wall of the pore to rupture causing redness, swelling,
and pus - in other words a pimple. Plugged oil glands
may form blackheads and whiteheads. Blackheads are not
caused by dirt; rather there is a bacteria that normally
lives on the skin and thrives on the sebum produced
by oil glands. Sometimes, this bacteria multiplies and
causes inflammation and acne.
Some facts about acne:
- Acne is built into your genes;
it runs in families.
- In women, acne frequently worsens at the time of
- Your cosmetics should be labeled
"oil-free," or "noncomedogenic".
- Adult women often have trouble with acne through
middle age. The reason is unknown although hormones
play some role.