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Acne TreatmentAdult Acne: What’s Causing it and How to Treat it
adult acne

Adult Acne: What’s Causing it and How to Treat it

One of the many things we look forward to as we move out of adolescence and into early adulthood is the disappearance of our troublesome teenage skin. Unfortunately, for some of us, it just isn’t this simple, and we continue to struggle with acne problems even as an adult. Knowing that we aren’t alone in this struggle–that many individuals suffer from adult acne–can provide little comfort when you are constantly confronted by troubled skin. Fortunately, it is not a struggle you will simply have to bear as there are things you can do to treat adult acne.

How to Control Adult Acne

In order to control adult acne, you first need to determine what is causing it. Consider the following possibilities:

  • Hormones. Changes in one’s hormone levels, as normally occurs just before your menstrual cycle, can be responsible for acne problems. Some of the most common forms of hormone-driven acne are deep and painful acne around the chin, neck, and back during this time of the month.
  • Stress. It is important to remember that stress has a very real, and damaging, effect on your body. Stress causes your body to produce cortisol, which is often accompanied by small amounts of testosterone. Testosterone can cause your oil glands to produce more oil, which increases your chance of experiencing breakouts.
  • Pollution. Dirt is obviously a main cause of acne, and the pollution around us, especially in a large city, can place layers of dirt upon our face. A toner pad or face wipe that is used after being outdoors for even a short while can reveal just how much pollution is sitting upon and affecting your face.
  • Inappropriate skin care products. Some skin care products can clog your pores and worsen adult acne problems, which is why you should look for products that are oil-free, non-comedogenic or water-based.
  • Over-cleansing. It’s natural to assume that the solution to adult acne problems is to cleanse your skin more thoroughly and frequently, but actually, this can exacerbate your acne problem. Over-cleansing can dry your skin out and irritate it, which will cause it to produce even more oil and therefore more acne.
  • Excessive consumption of sugar. Sugar consumption can raise your insulin levels, which may, in turn, raise your body’s production of testosterone, once again leading to excessive oil production. It is true that some individuals are far more sensitive to sugar consumption than others, so it’s important to gauge your own reaction. If eating a little dark chocolate every now and again has no adverse effect on your skin, there is no reason to deprive yourself, but if you notice that your daily indulgence in ice-cream causes you to break out, it’s best to avoid this high sugar intake.

Adult Acne Treatment Solutions

If you are suffering from extensive adult acne problems, the best solution is to consult with a professional dermatologist in order to determine the underlying cause or causes and find a workable solution. However, if you consider that your adult acne problems are relatively mild and seem to fluctuate depending on the time of the month, your stress levels and your diet, consider the following options:

  • Use products with acne-fighting ingredients. Some examples include salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, sulfur, and retinol. It’s important to remember that even these products can create adverse effects if used improperly or too frequently, so make sure that you understand how they work and how best to use them.
  • Exfoliate your skin. In order to help eliminate the dirt and dead skin cells that clog pores and lead to acne, you should exfoliate your skin regularly. That said, over-exfoliation can be problematic, so make sure you use a gentle but effective exfoliator only once or twice a week.
  • Spot treat as necessary. While you don’t want to apply harsh, drying products like benzoyl peroxide to your entire face, these can be very effective spot treatments that dry out pimples and kill bacteria where needed.
  • Use anti-inflammatory products. If you suffer from adult acne, you likely also suffer from the swelling and redness that accompanies inflammation. Instead of relying on concealer and other makeup products to hide this inflammation, try using products that contain ingredients, like antioxidants, which fight inflammation.
  • Consider making nutritional changes. A nutritionist may be able to help you make the nutritional changes that assist in calming down your hormone fluctuations, and anything else that could be exacerbating your acne issues.
  • Leave acne cysts alone. It’s understandable that big acne cysts are quite painful–their quick growth actually stretches the nerves–but trying to empty them yourself is not the solution. Instead, consider applying either warm or cold compresses to relieve the discomfort.
  • Visit the spa. There are various facials for adult acne one can receive if they desire professional help. These facials are designed to aggressively kill bacteria and dry out blemishes so as to improve the condition of one’s skin and are often recommended in a series to help improve results.

Adult acne can understandably be troublesome and frustrating, but with the right approach, it can be successfully resolved so you can enjoy clear, radiant skin.



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