What role does diet play in acne?

Extensive studies have shown that acne is not significantly influenced by diet. In other words, food does not cause acne. However, if you are convinced that a certain food is making your acne worse then avoid it. If your acne is well managed, your diet will not make a difference.

Does stress cause acne?

Studies have shown that stress does not cause acne but stress can worsen it. When an individual is stressed, glucocorticoids are released in excess. These glucocorticoids can cause sebaceous glands to secrete more oil and subsequently worsen acne.

Is acne caused by dirt or poor hygiene?

Acne is not caused by dirt or surface skin oils. If you scrub or rub your skin , it can actually worsen your acne. Vigorous and repetitive washing will only serve to redden and irritate the skin. You should wash your face 2 times a day with a gentle cleanser and then use appropriate acne therapies.

Does the sun help acne?

There is no proven effect of sunlight on acne. As well, ultraviolet light in sunlight increases the risk of skin cancer and early aging of the skin. Since there are many other effective therapies for acne, sunlight is not recommended. Many acne treatments also increase the skin’s sensitivity to the sun, augmenting the risk of sun exposure.

Is it harmful to squeeze my pimples?

Yes, squeezing and picking pimples (especially the inflammatory ones) can increase the chances of scarring. Squeezing forces the pus deeper into the skin increasing inflammation and scarring.

How long does it take for acne to clear?

The time it takes for acne to clear really depends upon the product being used. Usually it takes weeks or months for acne to improve on a treatment plan. Most physicians would recommend the use of a medication or combination of medications daily for 4 to 8 weeks before making changes. It is very important for patients not to become discouraged and discontinue their medications.

Why do I have acne as an adult?

Most acne occurs in the teenage years and improves in the 20’s. However some adults especially females continue to have acne. As well, acne may start in adulthood. Majority of women with adult acne do not have increased androgen levels but have an increased sensitivity to normal levels of androgens. As well a female hormone called progesterone also have androgenic effects. Androgens tend to increase sebum in the sebaceous glands predisposing one to acne.

What can be done for acne scarring?

Scarring is best prevented by treating acne. There are a number of ways to improve the scarring caused by acne. The treatment must always be individualized for each patient. Treatment strategies include chemical peels, microdermabrasion, collegen injections, and laser resurfacing. It is best to see a physician in regards to which treatment method would be best for you. It is important that the acne be well controlled before any procedure is used for scarring. Please read our section on acne scarring for more information.

What is the best way to treat acne?

Acne must be treated individually. If you have not had good results from the your current treatments, then consider seeking medical attention to decide which treatments are best for you. For more information about the types of acne treatments that are available please see acne treatments.

What kind of skin care and cosmetic products can an acne prone patient use?

It is important to use “noncomedogenic” skin care products as they have been formulated to not cause or worsen acne. Please see Pro-Derm & Vivier Line. The choice of cleansers and moisturizers should be made with your health care professional.

Can I stop taking my medication now that my face is clear?

It is important to always consult your physician before stopping your medications. Many times patients will stop their medication suddenly only to have their acne flare up several weeks later. If the acne has improved, often oral medications can be tapered. However, it is still important to be on a topical form of therapy and a good skin care regimen to prevent recurrence of acne lesions.

Why if I forget a dose of my oral medication to clear acne?

In most cases, if you miss a day of your oral treatment, do not double up the next day; rather, get back to your daily regimen as soon as possible–but there may be different instructions for different oral medications. Ask your physician or pharmacist about what to do if you miss a dose of your particular medication.

Skin Care Regimen

1. Wash your face only twice a day with a gentle cleanser. Do not excessively wash your face as it does not improve your acne and in fact, it can make your skin even more red and inflamed.

Apply lukewarm water to your face.

Apply the cleanser to your skin and rub it very gently using circular motions.

Wash your face with lukewarm water to remove the cleanser

Pat your skin dry, do not rub.