What you need to know:
- One of the best ways to treat acne is having a skincare routine that cleanses, hydrates, and treats the blemishes.
- Use an oil-free moisturizer every day to keep the skin hydrated and reduce breakouts.
Apart from the usual stressors that come with being a teenager such as body changes and peer pressure, you are also bombarded with hormones that can wreak havoc on the skin. Acne management, choosing skincare products, and navigating social media pressures to look perfect can contribute to low self-confidence and an unhappy appearance.
What is acne?
Acne is a skin condition that causes pimples and blackheads. It is caused by clogged pores and bacteria on the skin. Acne can be classified as mild, moderate, or severe depending on the types of lesions (pimples, blackheads, cysts) present on the face.
Most teens experience acne at some point in their lives, but it tends to go away around age 18 or 19 when hormones begin to settle down, and breakouts become less frequent.
Causes of acne breakouts
Acne breakouts stem from a combination of increased oil production and inflammation of the skin. The following are potential causes:
- Hormonal imbalances - pervasive in teenagers
- Genetically inherited
- Irritation from clothing, jewelry, or anything else that comes into contact with the skin.
- A diet high in processed foods containing sugar, fat, and animal protein
- Candida albicans (a type of yeast)
- Excessive sweating or heat on the skin
- Medications such as birth control pills
- Wearing tight clothing and/or helmets that don't allow air circulation
One of the best ways to treat acne is having a skincare routine that cleanses, hydrates, and treats the blemishes. This is often enough to keep your skin looking healthy and clear. If you already have acne, you can use an acne treatment cream or lotion designed specifically for teens.
Over-the-counter treatments are sometimes used to improve acne or lessen the severity and frequency of breakouts. These usually contain benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, or sulfur to fight breakouts and reduce redness, swelling, and other signs of inflammation. Some might contain ingredients such as tea tree oil or eucalyptus extract to help heal the skin.
It is important to make sure that you are gentle with your skin and don't irritate it further by scrubbing, picking, or popping the pimples – which can lead to irritation and infection. It's also a good idea not to wear makeup when you have acne because makeup will clog pores and worsen breakouts.
Tips to keep your face looking fresh and clean
- The first step in caring for your skin is to know what kind of skin you have. If you have oily or acne-prone skin, use a gentle cleanser and moisturizer to control oil production and reduce breakouts.
- Ensure your face is clean. Wash your face twice a day with a gentle cleanser or acne treatment soap.
- Moisturize. Use an oil-free moisturizer every day to keep the skin hydrated and reduce breakouts. If you have acne, use an acne treatment cream, lotion, or medicated pads.
- Eat a clean diet. Limit sugar and processed foods and eat a healthy diet, low in fat, high in protein, fresh vegetables and fruits for vitamins A & C. Drink plenty of water because it hydrates the body and helps fight inflammation.
- Use sunscreen when going out for extended periods to avoid premature aging of the skin and the risk of cancer due to UV rays from the sun.
- Avoid excess makeup to prevent clogged pores and breakouts. Be sure to wash your face and remove all makeup before going to bed.
- Exercise regularly. Teens need to get at least 30 minutes of exercise each day to combat the effects of acne on their bodies, boost their self-esteem, and increase confidence levels. Exercise also releases endorphins which can help reduce stress, relieve depression, and help fight acne.
- Stress is another major cause of acne. Find ways to de-stress, such as meditation or yoga. Ensure you get enough sleep too. Additionally, identify the cause of your stress and solve it. Ask for help if need be.
In conclusion, one of the best ways to treat acne is having a skincare routine that cleanses, hydrates, and treats blemishes. This is often enough to keep your skin looking healthy and clear. If you already have acne, you can use an acne treatment cream or lotion designed specifically for teens. Finally, if your acne is a severe problem, you might need to see a dermatologist or consult an aesthetician for further treatment.