Acne and Scars – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) (Pankaj Singhal)

Acne is a common problem that’s quite widespread among teenagers. Recently, a teenage Mumbai teenager girl Swati contacted me to answer her plethora of questions related to acne. Following is an excerpt of the conversation between our skin expert and Swati. Have a look.

  • Swati:Do teens alone get acne?
  • Skin Expert:No, people get this problem for the first time when they reach adulthood and in some cases even babies are born with acne. Majority of sufferers may outgrow it, but some women have to bear it until the menopause.
  • Swati:What can make the condition worse?
  • Skin Expert:Some of the factors are:

    • Hard scrubbing of the skin
    • Picking or Squeezing at blemishes
    • Pollution and high humidity
    • Friction caused by rubbing or leaning on the skin
    • Pressure from tight collars, backpacks, or bike helmets
    • Change in hormone levels in girls and adult women two to five days before the start of their menstrual period
  • Swati:Does humidity and sweating make the condition worse?
  • Skin Expert:Yes, both of these have potential to make the condition even worse. Swelling and hydration of the ductal blockages is caused by humidity and sweating. This can trigger the inflammatory phase of acne.
  • Swati:What are the Effects of other medicines?
  • Skin Expert:Yes. Many medicines which aren’t taken under the guidance of an expert doctor can aggravate the acne. Though, if a medicine recommended by a doctor is making the condition worse, then consult him/her before you stop consuming it.
  • Swati:What if I forget to take my medication?
  • Skin Expert:Associating the medication in your daily routine is an easy way to remember consuming it. Make it a habit to check whether you had the medicines or not. Keep them in a place in your home where you visit the most.
  • Swati:What the right time to stop medication?
  • Skin Expert:Its strongly recommended that you should never stop taking medicines on your own. Consult your doctor first before doing so.  The acne might flare up again, if medication is stopped early, or even if the dose is changed.
  • Swati:How often should I wash and clean my skin?
  • Skin Expert:Wash your skin thoroughly at least twice a day using a mild soap. After drying the skin, apply an appropriate acne treatment.
  • Swati:Who should I consult to treat my condition?
  • Skin Expert:You can visit any doctor for an advice on acne, but it would be best if you go to an expert dermatologist. An expert will understand your condition in a better way, helping you to face the problem firmly.
  • Swati:How to remove the acne scar?
  • Skin Expert:This problem is quite common among people suffering from acne. Visible scars are left behind by the acne which diminishes the beauty of a person’s face. The glow and smoothness are hampered by these scars.