So you thought pimples were just for teenagers? Unfortunately, that isn’t the case. People can experience acne at any age, and some studies show that the incidence of adult acne is on the rise.
In our practice, we regularly see patients who are frustrated with flare-ups of adult acne. Luckily, there are some hassle free ways to manage and eliminate adult acne. Resolving the problem starts with understanding what may be causing adult acne and then determining the best treatment path for your particular situation.
What causes adult acne?
Pimples can affect anyone, but women are more likely than men to experience acne as adults. That’s often because of the hormonal changes their bodies experience on a monthly basis and during menopause, and sometimes as a result of cosmetics or skin care products. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, there are several reasons for adult acne, such as:
• Hormones. Women often experience fluctuating hormone levels during their periods, during pregnancy, during menopause and after starting or stopping use of birth control pills. Those changes in hormone levels sometimes result in acne breakouts.
• Stress. In today’s society, many of us live busy, harried, always-on lives that create higher stress levels than ever before. And research has linked increased stress to acne flare-ups, as a rise in stress hormones can stimulate the oil glands in the skin, causing pimples. If you are under constant stress, acne can be an ongoing problem.
• Hair and skin care products. Some cosmetic and beauty products contain ingredients that clog pores, which can lead to an increase in the appearance of acne. To make sure your products aren’t having that effect, look for one of these descriptors on the product labels: non-comedogenic, non-acnegenic or oil-free.
• Diet. While a certain type of food or drink may not cause acne for everybody, certain foods or drinks may tend to cause flare-ups for individuals. For instance, if you notice that every time you eat chocolate, you get pimples, chocolate may be a cause for your acne. For many people, drinking more water results in clearer skin.
How to Treat Adult Acne
In some cases, patients can determine certain foods or products that may be at the root of their acne breakouts. When that happens, simply eliminating those foods or products may result in clearing up the acne problem.
However, it isn’t always that easy. Sometimes patients need medications to help resolve their acne flare-ups. In our office, we regularly recommend over-the-counter retinol creams or prescription retinoids for more serious acne.
The good news is that even though we all wish acne would simply stay in high school, there are a number of treatment options available to get rid of adult acne. For more information, please call our office at 205-871-7332.