Managing Severe Acne: What Works and What to Avoid

Acne is a common skin condition affecting millions of people worldwide, regardless of age, gender, and skin color. Everyone who has experienced it understands how this significantly affects their quality of life. While mild cases can usually be managed with topical treatments, severe acne may require special attention from a dermatologist or other qualified skin professional for proper treatment.

What Causes Acne?

Acne is an inflammatory skin condition with redness, swelling, and pus-filled bumps that vary in severity. It is caused by sebum overproduction, an oily substance released by the skin’s sebaceous glands. This excess oil combines with dead skin cells to clog pores, which leads to infection of the surrounding area.

Acne can result in inflammation, acne lesions, blackheads, whiteheads, cysts, and nodules.

Other causes of acne include:

  • Hormonal changes during puberty, pregnancy, and menstruation
  • Certain medications, such as corticosteroids and lithium
  • Genetics
  • Stress
  • Processed foods and a diet high in refined sugars

What Should You Do to Manage Severe Acne?

Here are tips for managing severe acne:

Seek the Help of an Expert

Visiting a dermatologist is your best bet. They can check any underlying conditions causing acne breakouts through physical assessments and tests.

For instance, they can determine if you suffer from hormonal imbalance. This allows them to prescribe appropriate medications to adjust your hormone levels accordingly. They may also recommend oral or topical medications to reduce inflammation and bacterial growth.

Ensure to choose a facility like this aesthetic laser spa, which is already equipped with the latest technology and materials for treating acne. Note that some dermatologists only diagnose and prescribe medications but don’t perform advanced cosmetic procedures.

Visit a Professional Esthetician

Many people don’t realize that acne can be managed from the inside out. Professional estheticians can help you learn how to prevent breakouts and manage existing ones.

They can teach you about proper skin care and cleaning techniques. They can also perform treatments such as light therapy acne treatment, chemical peels, etc. In most cases, they also have certain products specifically formulated to help with acne.

Practice Good Hygiene

Regularly washing your face twice daily with a gentle cleanser and warm water is essential for treating acne. This helps remove any excess oil, dirt, and bacteria from the skin’s surface. Avoid scrubbing too hard since this may further irritate your skin. Remember to moisturize afterward, as this can help keep the skin hydrated and reduce dryness or flaking.

Follow a Skin Care Regimen

It’s important to maintain a routine skin-care regimen to lessen acne breakouts and keep your skin healthy. As mentioned, wash your face with a gentle cleanser twice a day, apply an oil-free moisturizer after washing, and use sun protection of SPF 30 or higher during the day.

It also helps to use products specifically designed for acne-prone skin and avoid those that contain harsh ingredients.

What You Should Avoid

Avoid Aggravating Factors

Be aware of certain factors, such as stress and diet, that can aggravate acne breakouts. While stress itself may not directly cause acne, it increases cortisol levels which can worsen flare-ups. Similarly, eating a balanced diet with fewer processed foods may reduce the risk of breakouts.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association (AADA), a high-glycemic diet (high in refined sugars and carbs) may worsen acne. These include:

  • White rice
  • White bread
  • Potatoes

Avoid Too Much Sun Exposure

While some think the sun can improve acne since it can dry up some of the oil, it can actually further irritate the skin. It can also cause scarring and hyperpigmentation and worsen existing blemishes. To reduce your chances of developing skin damage or burns, always protect yourself by wearing a hat and applying sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher.

Avoid Picking or Squeezing Your Pimples

Picking or squeezing on pimples can lead to infection, scabbing, scarring, and other complications. Instead, use gentle extractions from a professional esthetician for better results.

Avoid Harsh Products

Some harsh products can contain irritants that can further aggravate acne breakouts. These include:

  • Alcohol
  • Astringents
  • Abrasives
  • Fragrance
  • Exfoliants
  • Toners

Note that some of these substances can be present in the products or procedures performed by professionals but will be in a much lower concentration. Also, they are highly trained and use state-of-the-art equipment to minimize any risk of harm or irritation.

Avoid Inappropriate Treatments

Many spa clinics offer complete cosmetic procedures, such as chemical peels, lasers, cellulite reduction therapy, and more. While it’s a breath of fresh air to have these services available whenever you need them, they may not be the proper treatment for you.

That’s why you should educate yourself on acne, its causes, and the possible treatments available according to your skin type and condition.

The Bottom Line

Acne can be troublesome, but it doesn’t have to take over your life. You can manage your acne breakouts and restore your confidence with the right treatment plan. Remember to follow a tidy skin care regimen, practice good hygiene, and visit your dermatologist or qualified aesthetician for help.

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