No one can get through life hiding their face, which means finding a solution to treat acne is a top priority for many of us. Yet to our dismay, finding the right treatment for acne makes a frustrating task seem impossible. At the practice of Dr. Michael I. Jacobs in New York, NY, our compassionate team is ready to take the frustration out of the equation to help you find the right acne treatment for you.
Are You a Candidate for Acne Treatment?
Are you a good candidate for acne treatment? The chances that you are qualified for treatment are very high. Regardless of whether you have mild, moderate, or severe acne, you are likely a candidate for one or more of the treatments offered at our office. You may be a candidate for our acne treatments if you want to:
- Eliminate blackheads and whiteheads
- Manage pimples and breakouts
- Treat acne-causing bacteria
- Minimize skin irritation
- Reduce post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation
- Correct acne scarring
Anyone who is suffering from acne is a good candidate for treatment. Now it’s time to learn everything you need to know about acne and how treatments for acne work!
Although acne may go by many names, it’s all the same no matter what you call it. Before you start your search for your ideal treatment for acne, understand what causes your acne in the first place.
What Is Acne?
Acne is probably the most common skin condition in America. At least 80% of people aged from 12 to 30 will deal with acne at some point during their life, meaning about 20% of all Americans are dealing with acne at any given time. Yet there is a stigma associated with acne that seems hard to shake, and that means that regardless of how common the skin condition is, nobody wants to be caught with a pimple. In short, acne is a skin condition the majority of people have and struggle to treat.
What Are Acne Symptoms?
Acne is the inflammation caused by micro bacteria caught in the hair follicles in the skin. When a hair follicle secretes oil that gets trapped in the pore, it causes an irritation that leaves the skin red, mildly sore, and sometimes even filled with white pus. Common symptoms of acne include:
- Cystic pimples
- Bumps and nodules
- Redness and skin irritation
Acne can be found anywhere on the body because all acne needs is a hair follicle and an oil gland to form. While acne is most common on the face, it can also be found on the neck, chest, shoulders, and back.
What Causes Acne?
There are many causes of acne. The basic cause of acne is when the oils in a pore are clogged by dead skin or hair, which creates a small bacterial infection that gives acne its red, swollen, and white-tipped appearance. Everyone who suffers from acne shares this cause, as this is the most basic biological explanation for the skin condition. However, there are other factors that can also contribute to the development of acne.
Hormones are a major factor for acne – after all, it’s no coincidence that acne first starts with the onset of puberty, which is when hormone production in the body starts to go a little haywire. Hormones fluctuate several times during the month for both women and men, which means that the rate of oil secretion of cell turnover is constantly shifting, and that eventually leads to acne.
Hormonal shifts are much more unpredictable for women, particularly teenagers and young adults who are still regulating a menstrual cycle. Many women notice that they tend to have breakouts 1 to 2 weeks before a menstrual cycle, which is when the body is releasing higher amounts of estrogen to prepare the body for the cycle. By the same token, pregnant women also suffer from acne.
Genetics are a factor in the development of acne because many people have a genetic predisposition that dictates how their bodies deal with oil secretion. The chances of you having acne are significantly higher if one or both of your parents had acne. Additionally, the type of acne you have is also determined by genetics. For example, if mild acne runs in your family, then it is unlikely you will develop cystic acne.
For many, one factor that contributes to acne is the sensitivity of their skin. Sensitive skin is defined as skin that is highly reactive to sun, pollutants, and products that care for the skin. Sensitive skin is often difficult to care for as it can easily become dry and red, which makes it much easier for acne to form. And because acne further irritates sensitive skin, it is very easy to fall into a never-ending cycle of acne and skin irritation.
Sensitive skin is often caused by a failing lipid barrier. The lipid barrier in the skin is responsible for the skin being waterproof, however problems arise when the lipid barrier is imperfect. A dysfunctional lipid barrier makes it much easier for dirt, pollutants, and irritating chemicals to sink into the sub-dermal layers of the skin, which can irritate skin from the inside.
While it may sound like a myth, it is true that sometimes diet can be a hefty contributor to acne. For example, diets that are high in sugar, fatty oils, and grease can create an environment in the body that can lead to the development of acne. Not drinking enough water is also a reason that acne might develop.
What Causes Acne Scars?
Acne scars are the dips and bumps on the surface of the skin where acne once was. Like the craters on the moon, acne scars are evidence on the skin that is left behind when the inflammation of acne has disappeared. The uneven texture of scarring is itself caused by a higher rate of collagen production while skin is inflamed. The collagen is trying to prematurely heal the skin and close pores. Acne scars are difficult to avoid, especially for those who have suffered from acne for a long time.
Why Causes Adult Acne?
Many of us enter adulthood thinking that acne is something only teenagers have to deal with, only to find that adult acne is just as persistent. The cause of adult acne is the same as the cause of any acne. Adults often suffer from milder acne than when they were teenagers but still continue to experience acne well into their 30s and 40s.
What Is an Acne Treatment?
A treatment for acne is any product, method, or technique that is used to correct the irritation, bacteria, and scarring caused by acne. Treatments for acne can treat the acne itself, the condition of the skin, or both. In fact, many treatments are specifically designed to treat the root cause and the visible symptoms at the same time to help minimize damage to the skin.
Common Acne Treatments
From over-the-counter products to at-home remedies, common treatments for acne can be found nearly everywhere. At our clinic, we have treatments for acne that can be used for mild, moderate, and severe acne.
Clinical Skin Care
Clinical strength skincare includes cleansers, toners, moisturizers, and prescription ointments that are made with high-quality scientific ingredients. Clinical skincare products are prescribed by dermatology clinics to help patients manage their acne between other treatments. If you are interested in clinical skincare products, please speak with us about exploring this option at your consultation.
Forever Clear BBL
Forever Clear BBL is a combination laser and light therapy treatment that treats acne at every stage, from the visible symptoms of acne to the bacteria in the skin. This treatment uses a blue light to eliminate bacteria in the pores, a yellow light to reduce skin inflammation, and an infrared light to stimulate the skin’s natural regenerative abilities. This treatment is ideal for the treatment of all acne, particularly for patients looking to control and eliminate acne breakouts.
Common Acne Scarring Treatments
Treating acne isn’t only about getting rid of breakouts. For many of us, treating acne also means treating the scarring left behind by acne.
Chemical peels can resurface the skin, close the pores, exfoliate, and reduce the appearance of scars. Light chemical peels, particularly those done with lactic acid, are ideal for treating both acne and acne scarring.
Microdermabrasion is a non-invasive treatment that exfoliates the skin to remove dead skin cells and stimulates the production of collagen. Removing dead skin cells can reduce the uneven skin texture that contributes to acne scarring, while collagen production can promote new skin growth.
Lasers and Radiofrequency
Energy based treatments, such as lasers and radiofrequency, are commonly used to resurface the skin. These treatments can be used to treat both superficial skin concerns, such as pigmentation or uneven skin tone, and reduce the appearance of scarring. Energy based treatments are versatile, meaning they are ideal treatments for scarring on the face and the body.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does Acne Last Forever?
While acne may be persistent, it does go away eventually. For most people, acne ends during the late teens and early 20s when hormones settle to predictable levels. However, there are some who will suffer adult acne of varying severities and wonder if acne will ever go away. Dermatologists agree that, with enough time, acne disappears for everyone and that treating acne is just a matter of finding the right treatment.
How Many Treatments Will You Need?
The number of treatments you will need to get rid of acne and acne scarring depends on the type of treatment. For example, Forever Clear BBL requires about 6 to 8 treatments to achieve ideal results, with regular follow-up treatments to maintain those results. Chemical peels and microdermabrasion, on the other hand, require continuous treatments. Energy-based treatments require regular maintenance treatments about every 3 to 4 months.
Can You Combine Treatments?
It is common to combine treatments for acne simply because everyone’s skin is different. While one person might do well on one treatment, another might need a treatment and a prescription to achieve the same results. During your consultation, we will discuss your skin goals and help you explore options to develop a treatment plan that is right for you.
Rise Above Acne With Acne Treatments!
Hiding your face until your acne goes away isn’t a viable option. It’s time to rise above acne and live your life without worry. If you would like to find out if any of our acne treatments, such as Forever Clear BBL, will work for you, then contact Dr. Michael I. Jacobs in New York, NY to schedule your initial consultation today. Our caring and compassionate staff look forward to helping you find your perfect acne solution!