The Woodlands Acne Treatment – Dermatologist Anthony J. Perri, M.D.
Most people think acne is just a passing skin condition we get when we’re teenagers, but the truth is acne affects not only between 70 and 87 percent of teens but also millions of adults ranging even into their forties. While acne does not severely affect your health, the self-consciousness, emotional distress, and scars it can cause have many seeking acne treatment in The Woodlands and Conroe. The good news is, Dr. Perri and the staff at Perri Dermatology are knowledgeable, compassionate, and ready to help acne sufferers of all ages.
What Is Acne?
Acne is a condition of the skin most frequently occurring on the face, neck, back, chest, and shoulders when oil and dead skin cells plug your hair follicles, resulting in a variety of inflammations on the surface and even deeper into the skin for acne patients in Conroe and The Woodlands. Acne treatments can be very effective in removing existing blemishes and preventing new ones, but acne can be very persistent, with new bumps often forming before the old ones have vanished. Acne blemishes generally present in one of six ways:
- Papules: small red bumps that are generally tender to the touch.
- Pustules: commonly referred to as pimples, these are papules with pus gathered at the tips.
- Whiteheads: plugged pores that are closed.
- Blackheads: plugged pores that are open, causing the oil within to turn brown due to air exposure.
- Nodules: lumps beneath the surface of the skin that are large, solid, and painful .
- Cystic Lesions: lumps beneath the surface of the skin that are painful and pus-filled.
What Causes Acne?
Acne is often blamed on things like greasy foods, chocolate, and dirty skin, but there is little evidence to support these claims. While no one knows for certain the exact causes of acne, because we know the main factors behind its appearance – oil production, clogged pores, dead skin cells, and bacteria – we do understand things that can increase your likelihood of developing it or making it worse. These include:
- Hormonal changes: Most common in teenagers, hormonal changes can lead to an increase in sebum production, and hence, more clogged pores. The use of certain medications such as those containing corticosteroids, androgens or lithium.
- Family history: Genetics are known to play a role in acne development. Your chances for acne development are greater if your parents had it as well.
- Greasy or oily substances: Greasy foods haven’t been proven to increase acne risk, however, oily lotions and creams or work areas where grease is prevalent, such kitchens with oil fryers, can increase the frequency of clogged pores in your skin.
- Friction or pressure on your skin: Items such as helmets, tight collars and backpacks, telephones, and cellphones create friction or press on your skin to exacerbate already existing acne.
- Stress: While stress hasn’t been proven to cause acne, if acne is already present, it may make it worse.
Prevention of Acne
Of course, everyone would prefer not to get acne at all, and there are a number of things you can do to help prevent it:
- Gently wash only twice a day: Washing removes excess oil and dead skin cells, which contribute to clogged pores, but washing too often or too vigorously can irritate the skin. Use a gentle cleanser and oil-free, water-based cleansing products on the affected areas.
- Use non-prescription acne cream or gel to prevent excess oil: Products containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid as the active ingredient can help diminish excess oil secretion and help prevent breakouts.
- Use non-oily makeup and remove before bed: choose only oil-free cosmetics (non-comedogenics), and be sure to wash makeup off before sleeping, as leaving it on overnight can lead to clogging.
- Avoid restrictive clothing: Clothing or accessories that fit tightly over skin can trap heat and moisture and increase friction that can irritate your skin.
- Shower after strenuous activities: Sweat and oil left on the skin after workouts or other strenuous activities can increase the likelihood of breakouts.
- Avoid touching/picking at problem areas: Excessive touching of skin or picking at existing acne can increase skin irritation and transfer oils from your fingers.
Acne can be treated in a variety of ways. Depending on severity and whether the patient is adult or teen, Dr. Perri will adjust his approach:
Adult Acne Treatment: The Woodlands and Conroe adult patients suffering from acne often require different methods of treatment than teens. Many topical treatments effective in treating the myriad small bumps, whiteheads, and blackheads common in teen cases do little to treat the deeper acne usually found in adults. Treatment for these cases can often include oral medications in addition to topical solutions, and in severe cases, excision and surgical drainage may be employed.
Teen Acne Treatment: In mild cases, teen acne can often be controlled through gentle washing and the use of non-prescription topical treatments with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. In moderate to severe cases, prescription topical and oral medications may be used in tandem, and again, in severe cases, excision and surgical remedies are always an option.
The most important thing with acne treatment is catching it early to avoid permanent scarring. No matter your age, if you’re suffering from acne, don’t let it continue to make you self-conscious and prevent you from living to the fullest. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Perri today.
In need of acne treatment? The Woodlands and Conroe dermatologist Dr. Anthony J. Perri and his staff are here to help. Call today for your appointment: The Woodlands – 281.943.2749 Conroe – 936.522.4966