Acne is a disorder resulting from the action of hormones on the skin's oil glands (sebaceous glands), which leads to plugged pores and outbreaks of lesions commonly called pimples or zits. Acne lesions usually occur on the face, neck, back, chest, and shoulders. Nearly 17 million people in the United States have acne, making it the most common skin disease. Although acne is not a serious health threat, severe acne can lead to disfiguring, permanent scarring, which can be upsetting to people who are affected by the disorder.
There are many myths about what causes acne. Chocolate and greasy foods are often blamed, but research has shown that foods seem to have little effect on the development and course of acne in most people. Another common myth is that dirty skin causes acne; however, blackheads and other acne lesions are not caused by dirt.
There are a few causes for acne, but hormones are the number one reason. There are many dermatologists that stress diet; sexual activity and other lifestyle factors do not cause acne. But, some parents and magazines keep following the saying that eating fatty foods such as chocolates, French fries and pizza will cause you to have acne.
Early in the teen years is when most people start experiencing signs of acne, due to puberty. For pregnant women, it is because the body is changing, again hormones. Acne is also inherited. Severe cases known as cystic acne usually come from heredity.
When the skin surface and its pores are blocked, the pores are described as being occluded. Factors that may cause occlusion include certain cosmetics, oils, greases, and hairsprays. Hats, helmets and pads used in sports may also contribute to this problem as can humidity, sweating and the prolonged effect of contact with damp clothing.
The exact cause of acne is unknown, but doctors believe it results from several related factors. One important factor is an increase in hormones called androgens (male sex hormones). These increase in both boys and girls during puberty and cause the sebaceous glands to enlarge and make more sebum. Hormonal changes related to pregnancy or starting or stopping birth control pills can also cause acne.
You really can get rid of acne, naturally. How? By learning about the causes of acne and how to rebalance the body. By understanding that applying harsh chemicals to the skin can actually exacerbate the skin's natural oil production and make acne worse. To really get rid of acne, you need to equip yourself with information about hormones, food, skin care products, dehydration, yeast and antibiotics. By listening to your body you will find the long-term path to clearer skin.