Acne is a skin condition that occurs when hair follicles become plugged with oil and dead skin cells. It often presents as whiteheads, blackheads, or pimples and can appear on the face, chest, upper back and shoulders. It is most commonly seen in teenagers but can affect people of all ages. Colonization with bacteria can contribute to this blockage.

Several factors contribute to acne including:

  • Overactive sebaceous glands which usually occurs at puberty
  • Family history can determine who gets acne and its severity
  • Cosmetic products (make-up) can contribute to blocking pores
  • pressure (helmets, hats etc.) can cause acne at points of contact
  • Certain medications
  • Changes in hormones as seen during a woman’s menstrual cycle.

Although acne is seen as a problem of adolescence which can continue into adulthood, it can also begin in adulthood. This type of acne is usually related to hormonal fluctuations.

Younger woman with acne-prone skin

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