Acne Causes, Treatments and Natural Remedies

Acne can be an uncomfortable, persistent and distressing condition. Acne affects mainly teenagers, but can continue into adult years. There are medical treatments for severe cases of acne, and there are also effective home remedies and alternative anti acne products.

What Causes Acne
The most common form of acne is acne vulgaris, caused by overactive sebaceous glands combined with a bacterial infection on the surface of the skin. The sebaceous glands can be found inside the skin and their function is to produce sebum, an oily substance that protects the skin and lubricates it. In acne sufferers, these glands have become overactive and have started to produce too much sebum on the skin’s surface.

When dirt and dead skin cells start to stick to the sebum, bacteria begins to form. The pores of the skin then start to become blocked and blackheads emerge. When blackheads are infected, spots start to appear.

Common Acne Treatments
One of the most commonly used ingredients in all commercial anti-acne products is benzoyl peroxide. It is used to get rid of the bacteria that causes the infection, and to get rid of dead skin cells on the surface of the skin. It can be found in most cleansers, lotions, creams and other acne products that are sold over the counter, but prescription medicines for acne also often contain benzoyl peroxide.

Accutane, or the anti-acne pill, is often prescribed for severe acne. Accutane contains Isotretinoin, a type of a retinoid that resembles vitamin A. Isotretinoin is believed to make the sebaceous glands smaller and to reduce sebum production, and it can also help to kill the bacteria from the skin’s surface. The anti-acne pill is often prescribed to people who have tried other treatments that have not worked.

Natural Acne Treatments
Natural acne treatments and products have become increasingly popular. There are now several natural anti-acne skincare products on the market, and most are available from natural health stores or online. Most natural products contain the essential oils of Tea tree and/or Lavender. Both oils are effective in destroying the bacteria that cause acne, and Lavender is also used for its ability to heal the skin and reduce acne scars. Aloe Vera is another popular ingredient in natural acne products and is believed to help the skin to heal and to prevent scars.

Home Remedies for Acne
If you are suffering from acne, it is very important to keep your skin clean and to maintain good hygiene. Most acne sufferers want to touch the spots, but this can make the condition worse. The skin can also benefit from lots of sunlight and fresh air, whereas heavy makeup can make the acne worse.

Foods to Eat and to Avoid
A healthy, balanced and nutritious diet is an important part of any natural treatment program against acne. It is recommended that acne sufferers avoid eating processed food, junk foods and fatty and salty food, and include a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables into the daily diet. Drinking enough water is also believed to be beneficial for all skin conditions.