The Basics of Breakouts

After receiving many questions related to ACNE, it is with pleasure that I the basics of breakouts in this brief, yet informative article.

Acne is a disease and arguably one of the most complex diseases to treat. It is physically and emotionally devastating. There is no single disease that I can think of that causes more emotional damage or more insecurity and feelings of inferiority. Ultimately, hormones are usually to blame.

Increased production of sex hormones is the primary stimulus, especially testosterone. These androgens enter the blood stream and affect the sebaceous glands in the follicles of the skin. The sebaceous glands secrete sebum, which softens and lubricates the skin, however, the overproduction of these androgens stimulate the glands to produce more sebum. Ultimately, this sebum moves toward the skins surface and this is where the complications occur.

The follicle starts to get “plugged” with hair, sebum, bacteria, dead skin cells and other debris. The plug swells as the material accumulates and is pushed out to the surface of the skin resulting in a whitehead. When this whitehead reaches the surfaces and oxidizes, in conjunction with the presence of melanin, we have a blackhead.

A microorganism, such as P. Acnes, consumes the sebum and release enzymes, which break down the fatty acids further irritating the skin. The tissue reddens, becomes inflamed and papules appear. The body goes into overdrive trying to defend itself with white blood cells and as these white blood cells die, pimples and nodules start to develop.

Beneficial treatments range from Microdermabrasion to Dermaplaning, as well as mild Acid Peels and CO-2 Treatments. Additionally, home therapy in the form of exfoliating cleansers, masks, bacteria killing and inhibiting creams.


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