More acne at 46 than at 16? Here’s why and what you can do about it.
Acne is defined as a skin condition resulting in symptoms such as pimples, clogged pores and nodules or cysts that typically occur on the face, chest, back and shoulders and may result in scarring of the skin.
While acne has traditionally been considered a hallmark of puberty, experiencing acne as an adult is a common problem. You may be well past your teen years but that doesn’t mean you are living pimple free.
So what causes adult acne?
It is thought to be due to a combination of hormonal fluctuations, environmental stress, and diet.
Women tend to start menopause at some point during their 40s and hormonal fluctuations are part of the process. When we are young our oestrogen is high and protects our skin against acne, but the older we get, especially around menopausal years, the progesterone is higher than the oestrogen, and that can cause painful cystic adult acne.
Some other causes of adult acne are high levels of stress, a diet high in sugar and processed foods, clogged pores from oil-based moisturisers and bacteria build up.
What can you do if you suffer from adult acne?
Don’t despair there are plenty of treatment options and at home tips that will reduce your acne and help clear up redness and scaring:
TOP 10 ACNE TREATMENT TIPS
1. Regular professional skin peels will remove dead skin cells at the surface, allowing new, healthy skin to present. Medical grade skin peels also stimulate the body’s natural response to produce collagen, which can help fill in scars. It’s important to remember that these treatments should only be performed by a professional who can match the right type and depth of peel with your condition and safely administer the peel for the best results. With regular skin peels you will see your skin clear up in no time.
2. Regular microdermabrasion treatments will unclog pores and clear skin debris, reducing the bacteria build up which leads to pimples. With microdermabrasion, you’ll start to see excellent results very early on, especially if you combine the microdermabrasion treatment with a medical grade skin peel.
3. Laser Genesis treatment is a popular non-invasive and non-ablative laser treatment, that gently delivers heat to the dermal (deeper) layers of the skin to regenerate collagen. This helps acne suffers by killing bacteria on the skin and deep within the skin, which drastically helps diminish active acne while preventing further breakouts. The heat also stimulates collagen production, which heals scars and improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
4. Use retinol (known as Vitamin A) serums at home as part of your skin care routine. Retinoids are considered the holy grail of aiding with skin concerns, and adult acne is no exception. Regular use of Vitamin A serums will help with the inflammation in the skin and prevent cells from sticking together within the pores. They are a natural exfoliant and also provide hydration to the skin, improving the texture of the skin including fine lines and anti-aging.
5. Tweak your diet. Decrease your refined sugar and processed foods intake. The current theory suggests that sugars can cause an inflammatory response in the skin. Try and include more probiotics, antioxidant rich fruit and vegies, nuts like walnuts and almonds, fish and other food sources of healthy fats. Add more zinc and magnesium to your diet either through your food or via supplements.
6. Drink more water. Staying hydrated in a must! Drinking water prevents acne by promoting proper skin hydration. Dry skin can trigger excess oil production which could contribute to acne. Aim for at least 2 litres of water a day. Keep a bottle by your side at work or make drinking regular glasses of water a part of your day. Spice up the water by adding fresh lemon wedges, cucumber slices or lime.
7. Wash your towels. Dirty towels happen to be packed with bacteria. If you’re using the same towel over and over again to dry your face after you wash it, this could contribute to your breakouts. Make sure you’re swapping your towels after every few uses, or let skin airdry instead of wiping it with a towel.
8. Hit the pillow. Better sleep improves the repair and the overall health of the skin, including acne, so try to get those 8 hours every night! If you have trouble getting to sleep try listening to a guided meditation to help you switch off.
9. Remove your makeup at night. Never leave your make up on overnight, this will just contribute to the bacteria build up and lead to more breakouts. Cleansing your face with cosmeceuticals can make a big difference as they are filled with vitamins that support skin renewal. At DRV Skin we stock a full range of medical grade skincare products, including cleansers, Vitamin A and hyaluronic serums, active moisturisers and rejuvenating face masks that will improve the health of your skin.
10. Finally avoid the temptation to squeeze and pick at pimples as this will lead to scaring and spread bacteria which can cause more acne. Popping a pimple can also delay your body’s natural healing process, which causes your pimple’s healing to take even longer. More so you could push the pus and bacteria further under your skin. I know it’s hard, but the best thing you can do is sit on your hands and stay away from touching your face.
At DRV Skin our experienced clinicians will assess your skin and tailor a treatment plan just for you. This includes recommending the right products for your skin type and condition. You do not have to ‘put up’ with adult acne! We can help you achieve clearer skin with minimal scaring – book in for a consultation today!