Why are Pimples Caused?
Dr. Asmita Dhekne Chebbi
Btm 1st stage, Bengaluru Feb 9, 2017
Acne also known as, “Acne Vulgaris” is a skin condition, affecting the sebaceous glands. These sebaceous glands secrete an oily substance called sebum. People with acne have a larger secretion of sebum that can trap oil, bacteria, and skin cells. The growth and proliferation of these bacteria causes inflammation of the skin, leading to pimples.
The exact cause of acne is not clear but researchers attribute it to a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
Some common causes behind acne are:
- Food: We are always advised to steer clear from junk, fried and greasy food items. Though consuming junk affects our overall health, they don't really cause acne or aggravate them. Some studies have implicated that a high-carbohydrate diet, dairy and chocolate may worsen acne but nothing has been established so far.
- Dirt: Blackheads are oxidized oil and not dirt. In contrast to the general belief, sweat does not cause acne as it is produced in separate glands. Not washing your skin and allowing the dirt to accumulate leads to acne.
- Over-Washing: Are you washing your skin too often? Well, stop! Over washing can dry and irritate the skin, leaving it sensitive. Washing your face twice is sufficient to keep the skin clean.
- Stress: Breakouts develop when you are under stress. In order to combat the stress, our body directs the blood flow and oxygen to vital areas in order to fight the stress. Your skin, however, becomes devoid of blood, making it look dull and dehydrated.
- Heredity & Genetics: If one of your parents had suffered from acne, it is likely that you will develop acne at some point of time. Some people are just blessed with beautiful skin genes and can sleep in a tub of dirt every day without getting a single pimple.
- Cosmetics: Some cosmetics and skin-care products are comedogenic. It is important to read the ingredients of the product and use one that suits your skin. Water based products are generally good for those with acne prone skin.
- Hormones: Most people who are prone to acne, begin to experience skin problems around puberty when the body begins to produce hormones called androgens. These hormones enlargen the sebaceous glands. This can continue into adulthood. Some women have acne around their menstrual cycle or during pregnancy.
- Extra sebum: Due to hormonal changes, oil glands produce extra sebum (oil). As the sebum makes its way up the follicle towards the skin’s surface, it provides a fertile environment for acne.
- Other Health Factors: What may look like a common acne problem could be a result of some underlying health issues such as PCOS, diabetes, candida, thyroid, constipation and metabolism issues.
While acne is not a life threatening disease, it can cause insecurity and cripple a person’s confidence. The good news is that there are a variety of treatments available – natural, medication, surgical, that can help control and prevent break outs. Consult a dermatologist who will chart out a treatment regime based on your skin type. Remember no two people have the same skin so what works for one may not work for another. A good skin care practice, healthy diet, yoga, plentiful water, adequate sleep and being stress free are some steps that you can take to keep your skin healthy.