Thursday, 27 August 2009

Acne and Scars (The cure and the cause)

Acne is very common and is especially developed during the teenager years. The best way to treat acne is by, of course, preventing it. However I never get asked how to prevent but how to treat it as a lot of us get acne from a very early age, even before we have any understanding of cosmetics, skin conditions and beauty. And just what are scars? Basically, without going into too much science, scars are the aftermath of any skin tissue injury and repair. Scars can come from cuts, grazes and any inflammation to the skin. When looking at acne scars, the injury is caused by the inflammatory response to bacteria, sebum and dead cells in the sebaceous follicle.


There are some mandatory steps that need to be taken so let’s start from the very basics. When facing acne we must keep skin, fingers, pillow cases, flannels, make up brushes and anything that comes into contact with our faces, as clean as possible. This is because bacteria transfers from one thing to another and this not only spreads acne but can worsen it.

Second of all it’s important to find the right products for your skin; usually I would suggest products that are not too harsh for the skin. Contrary to the common mistake a lot of people make, harsh chemicals can make skin even sorer and irritates skin as opposed to zapping spots and ‘treating’ it. I believe in being as gentle to the skin as possible and starting from home made remedies and if that really doesn’t work then using products which contain natural ingredients.

There are many ways to ‘treat’ acne, all of which are suited for different people, different circumstances and skin types. If you have severe acne I would always suggesting going to a dermatologist and also a nutritionist. While a lot of things can treat acne externally it’s important to look at diet; and also as I am Chinese I have a basic yet thorough understanding of Chinese medicine therefore I really believe in the science behind it. If it is ever possible it would be a great opportunity to go to a qualified and reputable Chinese herbal doctor who can look at your body and deal with these problems internally as well.

Acne Scars

There are many ways to fade out scars once you have them. Starting from the very natural remedies, you can try oils such as Vitamin E oil or Jojoba oil; use this topically on skin day and night and within time scars fade gradually. You can also try using products with ingredients such as aloe vera and royal jelly which also helps with skin repair.

If after all natural skin remedies do not work for you, it is an idea to look at processes such a microdermabrasion. This process not only used medically to treat acne but also the scars. This pain free procedure is often used in spas, skin specialist and doctors and now products are marketed as microdermabrasive. The surface of your skin is removed with abrasive material and this is supposedly very effective for scars which surface above the skin. Similarly you may want to look into processes such as chemical peels but this can relatively expensive.

Alternatively there are other products in the market shelves which can be bought to use as home such as Dermatix, bio oil, cocoa butter and the Egyptian Magic. You can also be prescribed medication called Retin-A® which is supposed to treat black heads and acne, but there is a risk of thinning skin and flaking skin.

Overall I would say that scars can be treated in many different ways and while I have a lot of them, I try not to let the worry of them take over my life. I have scars from spots, chicken pox and lots of burns and scratches which just come from life. From my experience I find that natural ingredients such as vitamin E and cocoa butter help a lot to keep scars from darkening. I also have found from experience that my scars seem lessened after every summer due to the vitamin D that you get from the sun. I haven’t found any medical explanation of this but this is just what’s happened with my skin.

In conclusion I would say that if a scar is bothering you a lot go to a skin specialist or dermatologist and take it from there. Blindly applying products to the skin can be time consuming, expensive and risky. In the mean time I would suggest looking up natural remedies and apply religiously to those areas.
Your scars the markings and story of your life, like wrinkles and aging, sometimes it just cannot be avoided and while we can’t fight what happens in life, we can embrace it and accept it. So don’t let something as small as a scar break down your self confidence and go out there and enjoy the sun. Just remember to apply some sun screen!

Peace x

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