What is Acne?
Acne is a common skin condition characterised by blemishes, pimples and comedones (blackheads and whiteheads) and in more severe cases; inflamed pustules and cysts. A condition which is often associated to youthfulness, acne can actually affect people of all ages.
It generally appears in areas of the body that have a large number of oil glands, such as the face, neck, shoulders, chest and back and if it is severe enough, it can lead to permanent scarring.
As well as the physical effects of acne on the body, there can also be some damaging psychological effects, leading to reduced self-esteem and even depression in some serious cases.
As the 8th most common condition in the world, it is a problem that affects most people at some point within their lives, regardless of their age or gender. In fact, 650 million people globally have acne, which is a staggering 9.5% of the population!
However, it is most commonly found amongst teenagers, with 80% of adolescents suffering from it. It will generally disappear by the age of 25, however for some, it can unfortunately continue until much later on in life.
What Causes Acne?
There are a number of acne causes, from hormonal changes to stress and diet. Here are some of the most common;
- Hormonal – Acne most commonly occurs within teenagers, which is normally due to the increase in hormones throughout the body during puberty (e.g. testosterone), or changes within the menstrual cycle.
- Genetic – For some of us, we may unfortunately get acne because it is in our genes. If your parents had bad acne, it is likely that you may get it too.
- Psychological – You may be more prone to break-outs due to psychological reasons such as stress and tiredness. It’s therefore important to relax and get enough sleep each night.
- Diet – Although your diet may not directly create acne, there appears to be a relationship between the type of food you eat and the severity of your spots. Milk and sugar for example are associated with making acne worse for some people.
- Environment – Your environment can also encourage acne, for example if you’re in a hot location, this can cause you to sweat, which can lead to clogged pores and spot breakouts.
- Cosmetics – From body washes, moisturisers and make-up, the products you put on your face can also affect your acne, from clogging pores, to irritating your skin, making your acne much worse.
Treatment for Acne
Although you can’t prevent acne, keeping your skin clean is really important, to help stop new spots developing. We would recommend you start simply by washing your face with a gentle soap each morning and evening. Avoid touching your face too, as your fingers can add extra oils and dirt. You could also review your lifestyle, making sure you de-stress at the end of the day, get 8 hours sleep and have a healthy diet where you avoid eating too many simple carbohydrates such as sugar.
However, if your acne is more severe, it can be controlled using a number of different treatments. There are a number of medications you could try, including benzoyl peroxide, antibiotics and hormonal treatments. These should all be available from your doctor.
Medications work in a number of ways. They generally stop sebum (oil) production to help prevent blockages, they kill bacteria, provide anti-inflammatory benefits as well as manipulation of hormones, to help keep your skin clear and to prevent new spots from forming.
However, each acne medication works differently for different people. It can therefore sometimes be a case of trial and error to find the right treatment that works for you. That is why at Proskin, we have the TheraClear acne treatment, which can help clear your acne without the need for strong medication or topical treatments.
TheraClear Acne Treatment
TheraClear is a state-of-the-art acne treatment that can help address multiple causes of acne. It combines light and vacuum technology for a fast and visible reduction in acne, whilst reducing any redness.
The process has 4 stages:
- Position – Our TheraClear device is placed over the treatment area.
- Cleanse – The device gently applies pressure to the area, removing the acne causing bacteria and cleansing the skin.
- Treat – A concentrated therapeutic light destroys the bacteria and helps to calm the inflammation.
- Complete – The treatment is now completed, with the pores cleansed.
We would normally recommend that you have 4 or 5 sessions in total (one per week or fortnight) for the best results. There is not often very visible improvement after the first treatment, however there should be a modest improvement after the second and the most significant results will come after the third session. Your acne should be much improved by the fourth and fifth treatment.
TheraClear acne treatment is not invasive and doesn’t require you to put chemicals on your face that dry out your skin. You get excellent results quickly, for a clear complexion and increased confidence. After your treatment, we recommend that you keep a good skin care regime to keep your spots at bay. Many people also come back for a touch up treatment every 3 to 4 months too, to help maintain their clearer complexion.
If you have much more severe acne, we also have a ‘Light, Vacuum and Needle Extraction’ process, to help get rid of lesions that are firmly embedded under the skin.
If you would like to find out more about the TheraClear treatment, please get in touch with us today. Call our team on 020 3757 8168, or book an appointment via our website.