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Acne is the single most common skin disorder and one of the most common conditions we see in our clinic. Almost everyone develops acne at some point and about half of the population eventually requires medical treatment. It typically begins with puberty, but may also occur after the teenage years. While most of us outgrow acne at some point, it can persist into adulthood in some individuals.
There are many contributing factors, but all acne starts with a clogged pore. Our skin is in a constant state of renewal with dead skin cells continually being replaced by new ones. In acne prone skin, these dead cells mix with oil forming a sticky plug that blocks the pore. This forms whiteheads and blackheads and is known as comedonal acne.
When the pore is blocked, bacteria feed on the oil from our skin and start to multiply. The bacteria stimulate the immune system which causes inflammation. This inflammatory response creates the red bumps and pustules seen in inflammatory acne.
In more severe cases, large cysts can begin to form. This large inflammatory response can damage the skin and eventually lead to scarring. It is crucial to stop acne before it reaches this stage as the appearance of acne scars is very difficult to reverse.
Acne can influence the way that people feel about themselves and can keep people from doing the things that they want to. Successful treatment of acne can greatly improve self-esteem and confidence. Some of the treatment options we commonly use are:
Acne treatment options can vary significantly from patient to patient depending on the type and severity of the acne. Most often, more than one treatment option is needed.
If you have questions regarding your acne, please schedule an appointment with one of our providers. They will be happy to create an individualized treatment plan for your acne.