It’s midday in the office, you got off on a rough morning and afternoon was expected to be no better either. Just when the day could not get any worse, you realised there was a bump on your face and a quick check on the mirror confirmed that it was indeed a fresh new pimple. Great.
Once home, you diligently removed all your makeup, cleansed your skin and applied the entire skincare arsenal before heading to bed, confident that victory is yours, but only to wake up to yet another pimple.
If the above clearly describes your current situation, we recommend you to continue reading further!
Understanding Your Acne?
Acne is one thing that does not discriminate between race, gender, age. It affects most people and usually occurs once they reach their teenage years. Considering that there are tons of skincare products, facial treatments etc. promising to reduce or remove those unsightly acne from your face, why is it your acne acting up then?
Acne, a skin condition can come in many forms. It typically results in hard pimples that causes discomfort and irritation. If lucky, the pimple would subside within a day or two without any acne scars. For most cases, acne usually occurs when your skin’s pores or hair follicles become plug due to dead skin cells, oil, bacteria. Quickly, these bacteria multiply causing it become irritated and at worst, infected.
In other cases, your hard pimples would have pus. Hard pimples can appear as puff up bumps or beneath the surface of the skin. They are generally caused by the following: hormones, stress, genetics, makeup, medications, just to name a few.
Besides understanding the causes of acne, it is also important to identify the type of acne you are currently experiencing as this is key in finding the right treatment. Typically, acne can be categorized as non-inflammatory and inflammatory. At any one point in time, it is also possible to be experiencing multiple types of acne. To learn more about the types of acne and how to treat them, continue reading below…
Self-explanatory itself, non-inflammatory acne do not cause any swelling. They are commonly known as blackheads and whiteheads which can be treated with over-the-counter medications. Consider using cleansers, toners and moisturizers that are able to exfoliate, eliminate dead skin cells.
With the surface being distinctively black, it is a result of the pore’s tip being open with everything else underneath becoming clogged with both sebum and dead skin cells.
Similar to blackheads, whiteheads are a result of a pore being clogged with both sebum and dead skin cells and appear as small bumps bulging out from the skin. A difference between both is that the tip of the pores are closed which makes treatment of it more complicated. A stronger topical medication may be required to treat whiteheads compared to blackheads.
If your pimples are red and puffy, it most likely means that you are suffering from inflammatory acne! Aside from sebum and dead skin cells which causes acne, it is bacteria that is clogging your pores underneath the skin’s surface which makes it both painful and difficult to eliminate.
Due to the acne being inflamed, oral and topical medications may be necessary in tackling this skin condition. The condition of inflamed acne includes papules, pustules, nodules, and cysts.
Typically pink in color, they are usually hard, clogged pores which are delicate which causes the color or texture of the skin to change and leaves a stinging sensation when come into accidental contact. They are usually a result of severe inflammation that involves the walls surrounding the pores which has broken down.
Similarly, pustules are red bumps that appear on the skin and are caused by the walls surrounding the pores dysfunctioning. They usually have pus with yellow or whiteheads on the tip of it where most people will pop and squeeze it out.
Clogged and swollen, these pores when irritated further become larger and are usually deeper into the skin compared to pustules and papules. Due to it being so deep, an oral medication prescription by a doctor or dermatologist is generally needed to treat it in order to reduce the oil gland size of the pores.
Appearing as either large red or white bumps, Cysts are usually painful when touched. Due to the pores being clogged with dead skin cells, bacteria and oil, they are a result of severe infection and are most likely to leave a scar. Likewise, an oral medication prescription is usually needed for treatment and a surgery by a dermatologist may be needed to remove it during severe conditions.
Ranking The Severity Of Acne
For the fortunate few, blackheads and whiteheads are probably the least of your worries out of all the acne where treatment can be done with over-the-counter medications. Topical creams can be applied if over-the-counter medications do not work.
Acne that may require more of your concern are pustules and papules as they may not necessarily clear with the help of over-the-counter medications. An oral or topical prescription may be required to control and remove them.
Requiring the most attention are nodules and cysts as they can leave scars when popped or squeezed. For severe acne cases, visiting a doctor or dermatologist may be required.
Before you go ahead and conclude which category and type of acne you are suffering from, carefully identify that the bump or swell is a result of acne. Be vigilant and patient when treating your acne as using too many products at one go may lead to severely dry skin. If you are unsure about the type of acne, consider visiting a dermatologist to have it diagnosed.