Common Skin Conditions: Acne
At ChitoCare beauty, we realize that information is an important tool for making better skincare choices. As skin conditions can often be confused with skin type, we highlight four common skin conditions that can affect people of all skin types.
Just like our fingerprints, each person’s skin is unique. Genetic makeup, climate, diet, lifestyle, external aggressors and many other factors affect our skin on a daily basis. Some people have a relatively easy experience with their skin and will show minimal problems throughout their lifetime. Others, however, may encounter skin problems at nearly every stage of their life.
While a lot of the ways in which skin reacts is related to a person’s skin type, which many people share, a specific skin problem, also known as a skin condition or skin disorder, can be developed by anyone, no matter what their skin type. In short, everyone has a skin type, but not everyone has a skin condition.
Skin type versus skin condition
The difference between skin type and skin conditions is that skin type is mainly driven by one’s genes, alongside other intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Skin conditions, on the other hand, are developed, and are considered a more serious skin health issue that require special treatment or professional dermatological help. Skin conditions are typically driven by one’s environment, immune system problems, other diseases, allergies or external irritants, however sometimes they can be inherited, or they can run in families.
Understanding whether any issues your skin has is due to a skin condition and not your skin type, is important for keeping your skin healthy, balanced and thriving. Misunderstanding skin conditions, or being unaware of them, could compromise your skin’s natural defense barrier and trigger further issues, such as inflammation, breakouts, irritation or sensitivity.
Some skin conditions are not curable, or they can fluctuate throughout one’s lifetime. Additionally, they can cause significant psycho-social distress, lower one’s self-esteem or be physically painful. Therefore, once diagnosed, it is important to keep an eye on them to take appropriate action. Most of the time, skin conditions can be alleviated and managed effectively, with professional assistance and the correct care.
Common skin conditions
As each person’s skin is unique, skin conditions can also vary from person to person in terms of causes, triggers, symptoms and treatment. Some skin conditions are rare, while some are common. If you think you might have a skin condition, consult with your healthcare professional or dermatologist, who can correctly diagnose you and offer treatment options. Below we outline some core facts about acne, one of the most common skin conditions.
Acne is the most common skin condition and can develop in people irrelevant of their age, gender or skin type. Typically, it impacts teenagers and young adults due to an increased production of androgen hormones, that exist both in men and women. However, hormonal imbalances in adults, for example during menopause or because of polycystic ovaries, can also cause acne breakouts. People with an oily skin type can also develop acne more easily, as their skin already produces an excess amount of oil compared to normal skin.
Contrary to popular belief, acne is not caused by dirty skin. Acne occurs when the skin produces excess oils (known as sebum) and the skin pores or hair follicles become blocked by dead skin cells, oils and bacteria, resulting in red pimples, whiteheads, blackheads or other skin bumps or nodules. These show up more often on the face, however acne breakouts can appear on the chest, shoulders and upper back as well. Acne spots can become swollen, painful or infected, or they can sometimes leave a visible scar.
Three basic types of acne
- Mild acne is characterized by a few occasional pimples
- Moderate acne causes red or pink papules that become inflamed
- Severe acne appears in the form of large, painful nodules deep in the skin, and cysts that can ooze pus and leave a scar
While acne cannot be fully prevented, it can help to know what makes it worse. As many things can cause acne breakouts, it is important to pay attention to what exacerbates it and take appropriate action accordingly. Simple over the counter (OTC) remedies can help with mild forms of acne, however, for more severe cases, prescription medication might be necessary.
Common acne triggers
- Oil-based make-up or greasy sunscreens, resulting in clogged pores
- Not washing one’s face often enough or not removing make-up before bedtime, resulting in clogged pores
- Washing one’s face too often or using harsh soaps, toners or scrubs, resulting in overproduction of sebum to compensate for loss of moisture
- Smoking, resulting in an impaired skin barrier due to oxidative stress
- Squeezing or picking at spots or pimples or touching your face, resulting in bacterial spreading
- Unclean hair, pillowcases or cell phone, resulting in bacterial accumulation and spreading
- Over-consumption of sugar and refined carbohydrates, causing inflammation and raising insulin levels
- Increased stress levels
Acne is not contagious and will normally clear up once a person has reached their mid-20s. Some people, however, do not outgrow it and require ongoing treatment. A dermatologist can correctly diagnose the type of acne and offer treatment solutions that match a person’s acne type and skin type.
ChitoCare medical Wound Healing Gel is ideal for intact or breached skin, pimples and acne symptoms. It protects against infection, reduces redness and inflammation, minimizes scarring and delivers a soothing cooling effect. Containing bioactive marine chitosan that is biocompatible, it covers the skin in a thin, transparent and breathable protective film that promotes the skin’s natural repair process.
* If you think you might have a skin condition, consult with your dermatologist. They can accurately diagnose you and offer treatment solutions.