Blackheads (acne) is a chronic inflammatory disease of the sebaceous glands, resulting from blockage and excessive generation of sebum.
Sebaceous glands are found only in the skin of mammals to which we belong. These glands produce a special secretion (sebum) is a mixture of fats that prevent dryness of the skin, make it elastic, protect the body from various bacteria and infections and are also involved in the complex system of thermoregulation of the skin.
The secretion of sebaceous secretion may increase when the level of male sex hormones (androgens) and to decrease under the influence of female sex (estrogen).
Acne is among the most common skin diseases. In one form or another acne occur in 60-80% of young people aged 12 to 24 years. However, acne can appear and after 25 years, usually on the background of metabolic disorders.
Causes of blackheads and acne
Experts identify several main types of acne depending on their causes. First of all, this endogenous (resulting from internal causes) and exogenous (resulting from external causes) acne.
The cause of endogenous acne can become various hormonal changes, including natural “hormonal surge” in adolescence and young adulthood. Also playing a role hereditary due to inadequate response of the sebaceous glands for increasing the level of male sex hormones in the blood, which can occur both in men and women.
In adulthood, the most common cause of endogenous eels is seborrhea. In addition, acne can occur in a variety of infections and chronic diseases. Often the clinical picture itself acne may suggest the presence of comorbid diseases. For example, the location of acne in women around the mouth and on the chin often indicates pathology of the ovaries.
Exogenous acne develop:
- in contact with the skin of various substances with comedogenic effect — the tendency to cause clogging of the sebaceous glands and coarsening of the skin (hyperkeratosis) in the mouths of hair follicles. These include various oils and lubricants, medications containing tar. With these substances the person may come into contact, for example, in the production.
- if the immoderate use of cosmetics containing fats (fatty cream powder, blush, eye shadow, etc.). In some foreign classifications of acne stands out even a special form of acne — acne mallorca. This clinical variant has been described in young people vacationing in Mallorca who use tanning oil, and the result was the emergence of acne.
- prolonged pressure and friction of the skin with clothing or linen, which causes mechanical obstruction of the openings of the follicles. An example is the prolonged pressure of hat, sports hat, bandage, bed linen among restrained patients, especially for excessive sweating. In these cases, in persons predisposed to the disease, there may be mechanical acne.
- as a result receiving anabolic steroids by athletes and bodybuilders is the so — called bodybuilding acne.
Symptoms of blackheads and acne
In the process of development of acne can be divided into four main mechanisms:
- increased production of sebum by the sebaceous glands;
- hyperkeratosis — excessive thickening of the upper (Horny) layer of the skin;
- the activity of the microflora of the skin, i.e. those bacteria that normally live on human skin;
Due to the increased production of secretions of the sebaceous gland increases in size, which leads to the appearance of unsightly pores on your face. In her mouth duct is thickened Horny layer of skin flakes that exfoliated faster than usual. Soon the flakes clog the duct and clog it. Finding no outlet, sebum stretches the cavity of the sebaceous glands, where it gradually accumulates more and more. In the blocked sebaceous glands begins to multiply the bacterium Propionobacterium acne. This bacterium is a normal representative of the microflora of the sebaceous glands, but when it replicates too much inflammation occurs.
Clogged sebaceous gland filled with sebum, is called a comedone. If comedon has no outlet to the skin surface, the sebum remains a white and whiteheads occur. If comedo reaches the surface, the sebum is partially oxidized, it is distracted by the melanin, resulting in the head of the comedone becomes black — blackheads occur.
Acne can occur for a variety of reasons. That’s why when it appears should consult a dermatologist — a doctor finds out what exactly led to the appearance of acne and prescribe the appropriate treatment. If you find that acne is caused by hormonal disorders, you will also require consultation with an endocrinologist. Beautician, in turn, will help to get rid of external manifestations of disease.
Treatment of blackheads and acne
- Easy — if closed or open acne with virtually no signs of inflammation. On the skin person has less than 10 elements;
- Average — from 10 to 40 acne items on the skin;
- Heavy — over 40 acne items on the skin is usually inflamed, purulent.
When mild acne using products for outdoor (local) therapy: creams, gels, ointments, lotions, etc. containing different active substances that prevent the formation of comedones or destroying them, reducing sebum and inflammation. These tools, in particular, include benzoylperoxide (OXY5, OXY10), tretinoin (Airola Roche, retin-A) and azelaic acid (Skinoren).
At moderate and severe treatment is carried out as ointments and medications for indigestion. In some cases need antibiotics (e.g., tetracyclines). When hormonal disorders can be applied to sex hormones.
To clean the skin from acne spend peeling — removal of the superficial layers of the skin using a weak acid (chemical peel) or mechanical sanding (dermabrasion). Also to combat acne is applied cleansing, special plucked facial, superficial cryotherapy, and even laser therapy on individual neosporine acne.
Surgical procedures have a very limited use in acne. The autopsy of cystic cavities are contraindicated, because it leads to the formation of persistent scarring. Sometimes in a strong festering acne is applied having lesions with special preparations.
Acne is fairly easy to treat. In most cases it is possible to achieve complete disappearance of inflammatory cells and prevent the formation of new acne for a period of one to several years (sometimes forever).
Prevention of blackheads and acne
For the prevention of acne requires regular skin care. People who are prone to this disease should not use fatty creams, oils and ointments containing lanolin and petrolatum. From cosmetic products you should choose those that are labeled “non-comedogenic” (non-comedogene), i.e. does not contain ingredients that contribute to the formation of acne.