The Wrath of Acne: Part 1

9 Aug

Acne sucks.

There I said it. I’m not going to sugarcoat it, although no one deserves to get acne, it’s genetic; inherited. So blame your parents. (Just kidding, they probably suffered it too.) Unfortunately, most of us have had some pimples, and a lot of us have probably had some form of full-blown acne (secret: I’m one of those people). So where the hell does it come from?

Well, you can thank your hair for acne, actually. Yes, hair grows all over your body, even if it’s not noticeable in places like your chest, back, and cheek area (if you’re female, to be specific). But really it’s the oil glands that are attached to the hair follicle deep below the skin surface. And in those aforementioned body areas, the hair has multiple oil glands attached to one hair follicle.

Sebaceous gland

Hair Follicle (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In normal skin, the oil created in the oil gland (it’s called a sebaceous gland) lubricates the hair and the hair actually ‘wicks’ the oil on to the surface of the skin. No pimples, just smooth, balanced skin.

But then puberty hits. Our hormones get all out of whack and our skin produces too much oil that it can’t keep up with it. There is when you get a clogged pore. It’s all downhill from there. The wrath of acne has begun. Bacteria love to live in the moist, warm environment that is created by the clogged pore, and by this point you have a red, pussy pimple on your face.

If you’re lucky, this only happens to you once a month when the crimson tide comes, but if you’re like most of us… this war is going on under your skin everywhere. All the time.

And what’s your first instinct? To pop it, of course. It hurts, and it’s just sitting there, starting at you in the mirror, its taunting you, and even though you know you shouldn’t… POP!

Ahh, that feels so much better. It’s gone. But it’s not really gone. Just like you have burst the pimple on the surface, you’ve burst it underneath too. Now all that bacteria is just spreading into sterile layers of the skin, infecting it. So when you wake up the next morning, you now have two pimples where you only had one before.

It’s a never ending cycle, unless you seek help. Most people don’t – they’re too embarrassed, or they try to self medicate by going to the drugstore and buying anything that says ‘anti-acne’ or something starting with a ‘P’ and ending in ‘activ”.

But you should ask for help. It’s not like they taught this stuff in school (hey, that would have been some pretty useful information!) There is help out there, they’re called dermatologists. They can prescribe you medicine to kill the bacteria. There’s also estheticians (ahem) that can educate you on how to properly take care of your skin. Don’t feel embarrassed, don’t feel hopeless, you’re not the only one. That I promise you.

If you have breakouts all over your face, get off your ass and get help. Do something about it. If you don’t, it will only get worse, and that’s when scars start to develop.

AND DON’T POP IT!

 

Tell me a secret…

Have you suffered acne? What did you do about it? Did you find any miracle products?

I’ll be going into detail next time on products you should be using to not only dry up the lesions, but also keep your skin in good health. I’ll also discuss the myths of pizza, chocolate, and stress.

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