After a long Colorado winter, many Denver-area residents can’t wait to get back out and enjoy the sun. After all, so many of our favorite activities take place in the long days of summer. However, if you are in the midst of an acne treatment, you may not feel like going outside. Acne, despite what you say to yourself, can affect your self-esteem because it impacts your looks, which is the first thing people notice about you.
Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States. Although it’s common, accurate information about acne can be scarce. This can make it difficult to get clearer skin. Myths about acne are as common as the skin problem. One common myth is that you have to let acne run its course. Dermatologists know that letting acne runs its course is not always the best advice. Without treatment, dark spots and permanent scars can appear on the skin as acne clears. Treating acne often boosts self-esteem. Colorado Skin, Surgery & Dermatology in Denver can help you with acne treatments that are tailored to your skin type and particular acne outbreaks. We offer many effective treatments for your acne. Schedule an appointment to begin your treatment today!
What causes acne?
Acne is caused by a wide array of factors, most commonly:
- Hormones. The hormone androgen is thought to be one of the main causes of acne. Their levels in the human body rise during adolescence, when acne first begins and when it’s at its peak. This hormone can cause the oil glands underneath your skin to become larger. This, in turn, leads to more sebum (the oily substance that keeps your skin and hair moisturized), which can lead to bacterial growth that causes acne.
- Hereditary. While there isn’t a gene per se that contributes to acne growth, other inherited conditions can contribute to being more prone to acne development. For instance, your immune system can respond to bacteria and hormones differently. Some families have a tendency to have an overproduction of sebum or to produce more dead skin cells. You could be genetically predisposed to producing excess androgen as well.
- Stress. While scientists aren’t exactly sure how stress affects acne, stress can worsen some skin diseases, such as eczema, psoriasis, and acne. This is because stress can trigger more hormones to be released, such as cortisol, which can increase both inflammation and sebum production levels.
Acne occurs when overactive oil glands produce an excess of oil that combines with skin cells to plug pores. Plugged pores, in turn, cause bacteria to multiply, leading to skin breakouts. Sun exposure can exacerbate the condition. It dries the skin, which may initially clear up acne, but also stimulates the sebaceous glands to produce more oil. This causes acne to reoccur, and more severely than before.
What treatments does Colorado Skin Surgery and Dermatology offer?
- Topicals. These are typically the first-line treatment and include antibiotics, retinoids, or salicylic acid.
- Oral antibiotics. Oral antibiotics are frequently used to manage moderate to severe acne, acne that is resistant to topical treatments or covers a large surface area. Common oral antibiotics include tetracycline, doxycycline, minocycline, erythromycin, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, trimethoprim, and azithromycin.
- Combination therapies. Oral antibiotics and topical retinoids together effectively eradicate acne for many patients.
- Accutane. Accutane is another oral medication and is the only treatment approved for severe cystic acne. Accutane has been used for over 25 years and improves acne for about 85% of patients, after a four to six-month treatment course. Accutane can’t be prescribed to pregnant patients, and women who can become pregnant must follow strict birth control rules. The risk of a baby developing severe birth defects is high in patients taking this medication.
- Microneedling and Laser Treatments. These treatments can refine skin texture and reduce the appearance of acne scars after active acne is under control.
- Surgical Subcision. More severe acne scaring can require a surgical subcision. A surgical subcision is a minor procedure where our dermatologic surgeons make a precise incision that reduces the appearance and texture of scarring.
Colorado Skin, Surgery & Dermatology in Denver specializes in acne treatment. Our dermatologists understand how acne can affect you both physically and psychologically, which is why we do everything we can to reduce its appearance. For the best and optimal results, it’s best to see a skin specialists who can examine your skin, discuss with you your lifestyle, and make the appropriate acne treatment decisions for you.
Our mission here at Colorado Skin, Surgery & Dermatology in Denver is to help you be happy and healthy in your own skin. Life is too short to not enjoy it because of an acne outbreak. Contact us today for your next dermatology appointment!