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What are the causes and treatment for female adult acne?

Acne & Scars

can someone please tell me what is happening to my face please, i am 29yo female, i have a moderate clear skin and whenever pimple/acne comes it goes away in just a few days and usually the most i have at a go is 1-3 pimple and rarely have them. however ever since last year october my face condition deteriorates, pimple/acne come and never go away it became red spots on my skin, and i have them so often, and i have enlarged pores and its spreading from a small area to a bigger surface, this has never happen to me. i try pimple creme, acne spot creme, washes my face morning and night but no improvement. i don’t or rarely apply makeup on my face. what should i do? hope to get a reply thank u in advance!

DOCTOR’S ANSWER (2)

Acne is caused by four main mechanisms :

  1. Oversecretion of sebum (oil) from your skin
  2. Overaction of a specific bacteria that causes acne called P. Acnes
  3. Inflammation of the pilosebaceous unit (pores)
  4. Decreased skin exfoliation/turnover

Usually salicyclic acid is able to treat all four issues and is an important part of your acne skin care.

Antibiotics like doxycycline, minocycline are important to kill P. Acnes bacteria.

Do visit a doctor who has experience with acne to have a detailed consultation and to know your other possible options.

620 views 25 Jan 2018

I’m very sorry to hear that – acne sucks.

Unfortunately, if I had to hazard a guess, clear skin all your life and a sudden onset of bad acne and big pores at the age of 29 sounds like a classical case of adult acne, where your sebaceous (or oil glands) go into overdrive.

Adult female acne is defined as acne that develops after 25 years of age. There are two main causes:

1. Overactive hormones (hyperandrogenism). Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is one possible cause. PCOS’s symptoms tend to be mild at first. You may have only a few of the following symptoms:

Acne

Weight gain

Extra hair on the face and body. Often women get thicker and darker facial hair and more hair on the chest, belly, and back.

Thinning hair on the scalp.

Irregular periods. Often women with PCOS have fewer than nine periods a year. Some women have no periods. Others have very heavy bleeding.

PCOS is less likely as you are already 29, and it tends to present earlier. However, if you have noticed any of the above symptoms, do see your doctor as it needs to be treated.

2. Hormonal changes due to your period. The more common cause of adult acne is due to an altered response of your skin hormone receptors to physiological hormonal changes of your menstrual cycle. Or in simpler terms – your hormones go crazy around your period, and your skin reacts to that by producing a lot of oil, resulting in pimples.

The principles of treatment for your acne are still the same as with other age groups (unless the cause is PCOS) – click here for a previous article I wrote about acne treatment.

“i try pimple creme, acne spot creme, washes my face morning and night but no improvement” – stop. there’s a high chance that over-washing and using harsh acne creams (a lot of which contain benzoyl peroxide, a very drying agent) is making your skin and acne a lot worse.

My recommendation? I’d strongly suggest you see a dermatologist, or doctor with an interest in acne.

Cheers

619 views 25 Jan 2018
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