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Acne “cures” and myths… debunked!

Acne is one of the most common skin disorders, and will affect most of us at some point in our lives.

Due to acne being so commonplace, a wide variety of myths surround this skin complaint, some of which are widely believed by sufferers and those close to them.

Here at Dr Nicole Dermatology, we’ve seen and treated acne of all proportions, including cystic acne. Dr Nicole experiences in treating all different types of acne, and performs a variety of treatments that can help improve your acne

Here are some of the most common myths that surround acne… debunked!

 

“People get acne because they don’t wash properly”

 

Whilst sleeping with your makeup on for a night may cause the occasional spot to appear, acne itself is largely caused by excessive sebum, which is driven by your hormones and genes- you can still suffer from it even if you wash your face religiously. In fact, acne can actually be caused by using too many products on your skin, including harsh facial scrubs and cleansers.

If you have acne, it’s really important to take care of your skin – but don’t overdo it. There is a seemingly endless amount of ‘miracle’ products out there, but slathering on lotion after lotion may only serve to aggravate the condition. Keep your skin clean by using a mild cleanser in the morning, evening and anytime you get sweaty (e.g. after a workout).

 

“Acne is caused by eating greasy foods”

 

Whilst some research suggests that diet can have an effect on the skin of some individuals, there is no direct proof that greasy foods are a direct cause of acne.

However, this doesn’t mean that you should indulge in these types of foods on a regular basis. Your body responds well to a healthy, balanced diet with lots of fruits and vegetables. It’s also important to drink at least eight glasses of water per day – this will keep your skin hydrated..

 

“Acne is just a teenage problem”

 

While there are many people who will just experience acne in their teenage years, adult acne is a relatively common problem that affects many people into their 40s and 50s. Adult acne is more common in women than men due to women having more ongoing hormone fluctuations, but men also suffer from this condition too.

 

“Popping spots makes them heal quicker”

 

Whilst it is okay to pop a spot if it has come to a head (we still advise against it though), popping spots causes trauma to your skin. This means that more bacteria is introduced to your skin, which makes the area worse and means it will take longer to heal. It’s also possible that popping a spot may leave a dark mark as it heals, making it more noticeable.

 

“Sun exposure helps to get rid of acne”

 

Whilst exposing your skin to the sun may feel like it’s helping your acne, extended exposure to the sun’s UV rays can actually cause damage to your skin. This can leave your skin feeling irritated and dry, which can result in more acne breaking out as your skin heals itself.

 

“Touching your skin causes acne”

 

Whilst touching your skin can cause bacteria to transfer from your hands to your face, causing spots, the underlying cause of acne vulgaris is beneath the surface of the skin. It’s the bacteria that lives deep within your pores, called Propionibacterium acnes, that is part of the core acne formation process.