A single pimple at that time of the month, a few spots before a big exam or presentation at work or persistent breakouts—we’ve all had acne at some point or the other. Some of us might have been intimately acquainted with the skin condition during our teenage years, while some others might only have had their first real experience of this annoying skin condition as they hit their late twenties. Some others will continue to battle with breakouts in their forties as well. No matter your age, if acne is affecting your skin and your self-esteem, we’re here for you. Let’s take a look at what acne really is, what causes it and the treatments we can do to help you tackle it.
What is acne?
Acne is the term for a skin condition that is a result of pores blocked by sebum, dead skin cells and bacteria. Blackheads and whiteheads (also known as comedones), papules, pustules (what we commonly call pimples, the red, inflamed kind) and cysts (the pimples you can’t really see, but can feel under the skin and can be painful) are all acne. Acne can affect any person of any ethnicity and skin type, and while it is most commonly associated with teenagers and puberty, you can suffer from acne when you’re an adult too. Acne usually occurs on the face, neck, back and chest.
What causes acne?
Excess sebum production and hormonal fluctuations are the most common causes of acne along with dead skin cells that block pores. Acne can also be triggered by stress, a high glycaemic index diet, dairy, certain types of medication, some hair products, underlying health conditions, environmental irritations, a compromised skin barrier as well as tight clothes and friction in case of back and chest acne.
No matter the cause of your acne, here’s how you can tackle it.
- Seek professional help
Any one of our highly qualified and extremely experienced doctors will be able to help treat your acne no matter how mild or severe it is. At illumia Medical we believe in a bespoke approach to skin health and our doctors will help you determine the root cause of your acne and map out a comprehensive and customised treatment plan to meet your skin goals.
- Get effective treatments
Depending on your age, skin type, type of acne, the severity and your long term skin goals, a bespoke plan to manage your acne and reduce the chances of recurrence will be mapped out. It will include one or more of the following treatments:
illumia Pro Yellow Gold Laser
Not only will this dual wavelength laser help you target redness from acne and post acne erythema for a clear, brighter and unblemished complexion, it will also help fight acne causing bacteria, reduce inflammation and decrease the size of sebaceous glands to minimise the chance of acne recurring. Plus, it helps stimulate collagen for plumper, firmer skin.
illumia SmartXide2 Fractional CO2 Laser
The illumia SmartXide2 Fractional CO2 Laser is a powerful ablative laser that causes controlled damage to the upper layer of skin causing it to flake off, allowing new, unblemished skin to replace it. This process also triggers the body into producing more collagen. This in turn helps to rejuvenate skin, smooth texture, soften acne scars, target hyperpigmentation as well as discolouration for brighter, smoother skin that also looks more youthful.
This is another treatment that effectively targets acne scars and hyperpigmentation. It combines the power of microneedling and radio frequency (RF) energy to help tackle acne scars, photo damage, fine lines and wrinkles. During the treatment microneedles penetrate the skin at optimal depths and deliver controlled and precise RF energy to boost collagen production. The entire treatment can be customised to suit different skin concerns ranging from acne marks and scars to enlarged pores and fine lines and wrinkles.
- Follow a suitable skincare regimen
Using the right skincare products will keep your skin healthy, strong and balanced and this will help reduce the chances of acne reappearing. Using a cleanser like the MD Skin Cleanser No.2 ensures a deep, but gentle cleanse that helps keep your pores clean without stripping your skin of its natural oils. A serum like with salicylic acid, which has anti-inflammatory benefits will help reduce inflammation from acne while also unclogging pores. Products with A vitamin A/retinoid will also help speed up cell turnover to reduce chances of breakouts. Another ingredient to look for is niacinamide that not only helps reduce redness from acne, but also helps regulate sebum production.
Lastly, oily skin needs moisture too, so look for a gel moisturiser that has hyaluronic acid to keep it balanced and moisturised.