Causes of Acne
Each pore opens to a follicle, which contains a hair and a sebaceous gland. The oil released by the sebaceous gland helps remove dead skin cells and keeps the skin soft. Excessive secretion of oil from the sebaceous gland can block the skin pores. Consequently, the oils and dead skin cells are trapped, and form small ‘plugs’ known as comedones- when the top of the plug is white, it is called as whiteheads and if the top of the plug is darkened, it is called as blackheads.
If the plug causes the wall of the follicle to rupture, dirt and bacteria found normally on the surface of the skin can enter the skin and form small infected areas called pustules also known as pimples or zits.
Acne that is deep in the skin can cause hard and tender cysts. This is condition is known as ‘cystic acne’.
Factors that aggravate the development of acne-
► Family history of acne can also contribute to the development of acne.
► Adolescence- During this period there is a sudden spurt in the secretion of sex hormones that causes increased formation of oils (sebum) from the sebaceous glands of the skin.
► Hormonal changes- Changes that occur during menstrual periods, pregnancy, use of birth control pills, or stress and can aggravate acne.
► Cosmetics- Oil based cosmetic products can cause acne.
► Medications- Some medications like steroids, or those containing iodides and bromides can cause or worsen acne.
► Diet- A diet high in glycemic load worsens acne.