There are four main factors that cause acne:
All four factors that cause Acne start with blocked hair follicles
Our skin is covered with tiny hair follicles. Millions of years ago we were all covered in hair all over our bodies. Today much of that hair has disappeared, but the follicles remain. These hair follicles can become blocked. We have sebaceous glands near the surface of our skin that are attached to these hair follicles, which are tiny holes out of which hair grows. The hair can be very fine, such as the hair on our faces, and is barely visible to the human eye. The sebaceous glands lubricate the hair and skin to stop it drying out. In order to do this, they produce a substance called sebum.
Acne is a consequence of our skin producing too much sebum. The excess sebum mixes with the dead skin cells that we all shed every day, and both substances together form a 'plug' in the hair follicle. This plug can result in the 'whiteheads' and 'blackheads' that can become the bane of our lives.
Sometimes, the harmless bacteria that lives on our skin can contaminate and infect the 'plugged' hair follicles causing the pustules and cysts which we associate with acne.
Some of us are more prone to developing acne, perhaps because we have a genetic predisposition. If your parents had teenage or adult acne, you might be more likely to develop it too; acne is proven to run in families.
The hormone 'testosterone' is a significant factor in the development of acne as the sebaceous glands are particularly sensitive to it. Increased levels of testosterone can cause the glands to produce much more sebum than the skin needs.
Teenage years are often when acne first appears. In boys this is a problem because the hormone 'testosterone' stimulates the growth of the sexual organs, and in girls it promotes and maintains muscle and bone strength.
There are many treatment options available to those suffering with acne. If your acne is severe, you should consult with a GP who may prescribe medication initially, plus topical treatments. If these treatments have positive effects that’s great, but sometimes they don’t have as profound an effect as you might like.
If you are looking for stronger solutions to (or as well as) prescription medication, make sure you seek advice through a medical professional or a reputable clinic. Acne Clinic UK recommend a very well regarded treatment for active acne - TheraClear.
TheraClear is very popular in the US, with very high patient- satisfaction percentages. TheraClear is also now available in the UK in a number of clinics and addresses multiple causes of acne in just one, single treatment. TheraClear works by combining light and vacuum; you will see a fast, visible reduction in not only the acne itself, but also any redness in the skin that is associated with your acne.