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Why is acne scar caused? I never touch my pimples on my forehead, but is it true that I can still get scarring? Even if I don't touch it?
Jamie from New York
Sometimes acne scarring is caused by the type of break-out that you have. My son had nasty acne, but it was simply pimples in profusion. However, a friend had the type that was cysts. Those can become serious problems for scarring because they are so deep. The only way to avoid complications from acne is to be under the care of a dermatologist. She will closely monitor your condition and make adjustments in both topical and oral medications if they are necessary. Another thing you need to be aware of is that exfoliating is not always the correct answer when you have acne because when the pimples have been opened the 'infection' will be spread more easily. Again the doctor will use sterilized equipment and topical wipes as she works on you to prevent the acne from spreading. Good Luck. PS: My son is now in his late 30s and doesn't have a single scar!
I don't know much about the scarring but my thought it to prevent the acne in the first place using a topical acne treatment. Not that I am pushing or selling a particular product but I highly recommend Proactive. I have problems with adult acne and started using it. It is not cheap but it works way better than any of the over the counter products I have tried at the discount stores. It will save you money in the long run because of the cost of trying all those other products that don't work. I believe that if you are a new buyer that you can get a starter or trial of the Proactive for only $19.95 right now. If you have to join the members club to get that price you can just discontinue the membership if you don't like it and don't want to be charged for it or there are different options for getting the product in a customized form.
Don't know if that is a solution to your problem with the scars but it could help in the future to avoid more scars. You can also try using those topical scar minimizing treatments at the discount stores but I'm not sure how well those work.
The key to no scarring with acne is not to pick at them. However, preventing acne break-outs is more tricky. The number one cause of acne is dirty/oily skin; the second cause for break-outs is hormonal. I have tried many products on the market for acne prevention and have found that simply keeping my skin clean is the trick. However, when certain times of the month and/or stressful events come into play, all the clean skin in the world won't prevent break-outs. I have tried Proactive (like Diane suggests) and personally found it to be very expensive with little results. I'm not trying to say it hasn't worked for other people, just didn't for me. (I was on it for three years, too). I just came across a little gadget in Walgreens the other day that seems to do the trick on acne. It's expensive, but if you have the hormonal break-outs that I have the priviledge of enduring, then it's worth every penny. Here is a website you can go check it out at: http://myzeno.com/. Good luck, Jamie!
#1 ----> Don't over wash your face, or your skin can rebel and make more oil. Once in the morning and once in the evening is enough. Use a MILD cleanser. Remember, if you use a super-strong cleaner, or a cleaner with alcohol your skin will produce more oil to try to re-balance it! (If you use a "scrub" to exfoliate, do this no more than once a week at most & follow with a high quality facial moisturizer)
#2 ----> Wash your pillow case & use a light color one so you can bleach it about twice a week. (also bleach your washcloth and face towel) as bleaching kills germs.
#3 ----> Don't touch your face & if you do, wash your hands first. (keep your hair, hat & everything that touches your face clean)
#4 ----> Get LOTS of sleep Our bodies repair themselves while we sleep. Sleep is VERY important for your skin!
#5 ----> Vitamin E helps prevent scaring. Eat well, or at least take a good multivitamin & remember cigarette smoking & birth control pills rob Vitamin C from smokers bodies. Vitamins A, C, E & Zinc are the vitamins that help our skin heal & be healthy.
#6 ----> Dermatologists are wonderful for those with very bad skin problems, but beware of the many side effects that go with most medications. Ask a pharmacist as they generally know more than doctors. I'd use acne drugs as a last resort!
#7 ----> If you need to use an over-the-counter topical acne medicine, use a Q-tip and just use the medicine on the spot you need to, this will prevent it from drying out other areas of your skin. Salicylic acid & Benzoyl Peroxide work for small areas, but are very drying, use sparingly!
* Some acne treatments you can buy at a health food store include: Tea Tree Oil and GSE (Grapefruit Seed Extract) the name-brand for this is "Nutribiotic". This is strong and needs to be diluted. Just use a tiny, tiny bit on a Q-tip as this is a super strong solution. GSE is wonderful & kills nearly all germs.
** Remember, acne is caused by a combination of Bacteria, Hormones & Stress. You may not be about to do much about the hormones, but you can reduce the bacteria and keep the stress to a minimum.
********** FOR FEMALES **********
#8 ----> Wash your make-up brushes with shampoo & a bit of bleach once a week. If you can't wash your make-up brushes, buy ones you can, or use disposables, as germs live on these.
#9 ---> Buy liquid make-up that has a pump dispenser not one that has a screw off top, that when you put the make up on you touch the make-up, as this can get germs into the make-up.
#10 ---> Buy make-up that is labeled hypoallergenic and fragrance free.
#11 ----> Try to go without make-up as much as possible. Give your skin a chance to breath!
#12 ----> Everyone these days says to stay out of the sun, but I've found that as long as you don't overdo it, sunshine helps acne, as does swimming in a pool with chlorine, just don't overdo it. Everything in moderation.
*** I had very bad acne as a teenager, and it totally cleared up as soon as I began taking the birth control pill, but beware this can backfire with others & make your acne worse.