Acne is a chronic inflammation disorder of the sebaceous glands characterized by comedones and blemishes and can also be hereditary. There are many types of acne, and treating it successfully depends on proper identification of it. Acne is commonly known as acne simplex or acne vulgaris. Inflammation of the sebaceous gland results from retained oil secretions, cells and excessive Propionibacterium acne (P.Acne bacteria). This skin condition can occur when your hair follicles become clogged by several factors, including ingrown hairs, dead skin cells, changes in hormones, bacteria, excess oil production, certain cosmetics and nutrition. Many other factors can include increased heat in the area or surfaces that can transfer bacteria such as makeup brushes, pillow cases and cell phone. Most acne is seen in teenagers, although adult acne is also very common.
Comedones (Black heads) and White heads are the most common type of acne, Every hair follicle in the skin also has sebaceous glands withing the follicle. These glands produce sebum (oil). Black heads and white heads are masses of excess oil and dead skin cells clogged in follicle. When the follicle remains closed this soft mass of oil and dead skin cells is a white head. When the follicle opens and the oil and dead skin cells are exposed to air, this causes them to oxidize creating the black or darkened colour, this is a black head.
Milia is another form of acne. They are similar to white heads but are hard pearl like masses of oil and dead skin cells under the surface.
Papules (Blemishes) are a small elevation on the skin that contains no fluid, although they may develop into a pustule.
Pustules are much larger than white heads and black heads. They appear as a white bump under the skin, hard to the touch, red with a center containing white or yellow pus. The pus is formed in an attempt to fight the infection caused by the bacteria within the follicle. They can be found on many individuals including individuals with certain kinds of eczema, psoriasis and rosacea.
Cystic Acne is a rarer more serious type of acne, this type of acne can occur as a few or clusters of reoccurring painful, reddened, large breakout from deep inside the skin. Cystic acne can lead to potential permanent scarring and pitting. It can reoccur for years and be hard to treat. When bacteria become trapped in the follicle it can create inflammation causing redness and swollen pores full of pus. The infection comes from deep into the skin, if the pustules burst the infection may spread underneath or even on the surface of the skin, leading to more breakouts.
Folliculitis is bacterial or fungal infection. Typically hairs grow up and out of a follicle, in this case the hair is growing under the skin this can cause and infection. It can be painful and tender, with large swollen lumps with an itching and burning sensation. This type of infection can occur when creating microscopic cuts or tears in the skin, usually from shaving. In most cases it is not sever and the skin will heal and clear up on its own. In very serious cases a swab will be taken to determine the underlying cause of the infection.
Pseudofolliculitis (Razor Bumps) resemble folliculitis and its sensations but without the pus or infections.
It is recommended to come in for a consultation to have your skin assessed. We will be able to provide you with comprehensive with a treatment plan and all recommendations based on your individual needs and concerns.
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