Hormonal acne is one of the most common types of acne seen in people. It is usually observed in teenagers and children of the pre puberty age. Some studies report that it is seen more in women when compared to men, but the overall frequency is high in both genders. There are various forms in which this kind of acne is seen. Even though most people experience pimples, some may even suffer from blackheads, whiteheads and cysts.
Hormonal acne is caused because of fluctuations of hormones in the body. It is not knocking on the doors of teenagers alone. You will find hormonal acne in menstruating women, pregnant women and even males with hormonal issues.
The pimples usually form in the T zone of the face, i.e, the forehead, nose, and chin during puberty, whereas adult acne appears more on the lower part of the face.
Apart from puberty, it is also caused by conditions such as PCOS, PCOD, and increased androgen levels in which case the hormonal fluctuations are extremely high. They usually last a week or two for women during their menstrual cycle but may last longer for other people.
The hormonal fluctuations mainly result in increased oil production on the skin, which leads to clogging of pores and inflammation. This can also lead to build up of acne causing bacteria under the skin. All these reasons pile up to welcome the acne that appears on the face.
Increased oil also causes accumulation of dead skin that makes the face look dull and tired.
Below are some methods proven to help cure hormonal acne –
Essential oils such as tea tree oil, peppermint oil, lemongrass oil, lavender, and frankincense oil help to clear acne.
Tea tree oil is an excellent antibacterial and antifungal agent that prevents the growth of any acne-causing bacteria on your skin. It is also an anti-inflammatory agent that removes all the redness around the acne. Tea tree essential oil also provides a cooling effect when applied.
Peppermint oil helps to open up clogged pores and prevent the normal pores from clogging. It essentially clears up your skin and is generally used along with medicated treatments for acne.
To use essential oils, simply mix them with a moisturizer which is light and non-comedogenic, and apply it to your face not more than twice a day. You will see results in a week or two.
These drugs are most widely used by women to reduce the hormonal fluctuations caused during the menstrual cycle.
Acne in women flares up usually during two times of the cycle, i.e during ovulation and when bleeding starts. These drugs help stabilize the hormones at these times and help reduce acne.
It has been observed that drugs containing estrogen or forms of estrogen such as ethynylestradiol are the most effective in reducing acne in women.
However, they should not be taken by people who have kidney problems or bleeding disorders. These drugs might interfere with their disorders and cause problems.
Androgen is a hormone that is present in both males and females. However, the problem starts when the levels of this hormone increases beyond normal levels.
This causes increased oil production and clogged pores and a subsequent acne flare-up along with other issues. Anti-androgen drugs reduce the levels of this hormone in the bloodstream.
The most commonly used drug is spironolactone, which is originally used in the treatment of high BP, it also reduces the androgen levels in the body. However, do not go for them without a doctor’s advice. Go for an appointment and you might end up knowing more about your acne than the internet can tell you.
Alpha-Hydroxy Acid (AHA)
This is a trending skincare ingredient that everyone is trying to get their hands on. It not only reduces the acne but also moisturizes and adds glow to your face at the same time.
It is notoriously known to clear up acne in 2 weeks and also reduce the scars on long term usage.
Today, a lot of skin creams, serums, and even masks contain AHA which makes it easily affordable.
If your acne is extremely severe and is not reduced by over-the-counter treatments, it is advised to consult a doctor or a dermatologist.
One of the treatments suggested by dermatologists is the use of antibiotics which kill the bacteria present in your skin.
These are used for cystic acne and moderate to severe acne. A doctor may suggest a treatment plan starting with a month’s dose and then extend it to long term treatment if results are not seen.
Usually antibiotics such as tetracycline,and erythromycin are prescribed. Note that you should not take antibiotics without consulting a doctor first.
Retinoids are compounds that are derived from Vitamin A. These drugs help to regenerate skin cells and remove dead cell accumulations very easily.
They are the most commonly preferred treatment choices as they have minimal side effects and tend to show more pronounced results when compared to other options.
One form of Retinoids is – Retinol or Isoretinol – which is most commonly found in medicated creams or serums.
This is a concentrated drug and should never be used in a careless manner as it may cause burns on the skin. One should always follow the instructions given by the doctor while using these medicines.
Apart from these treatments, changes in lifestyle help to reduce acne as well. A reduction in the intake of sugars, processed and fried foods are generally advised. Also, try to include a lot of fiber in your diet such as fresh fruits and vegetables. These contain a lot of nutrients and help hydrate your skin from the inside.