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Acne and Personal Hygiene

Prerna Salla
Most of us grow up with notions that are either generalizations or half-truths. Like most of us think that only teens suffer from acne. However, acne can develop at any age. This story presents some important acne facts, and also provides some tips for better personal care.
Much as you would want to hunt for the real reasons, you'll never actually find out what causes acne. Blocked, infected, and inflamed sebaceous glands (oil glands in the skin) lead to acne. But what causes a blockage or an infection in these glands? There are a number of myths that people seem to possess about acne. Let's analyze each one, and determine what the real causes of acne are.
Understanding Acne

One of the important acne facts is that acne can occur at any given time in life, let alone teen age. Let's explore this myth. Acne is largely linked to hormone production in the body. Hormonal imbalance can trigger acne on your face. Since most hormonal activity peaks at teenage, it is often thought that only teens suffer from acne. This, however, is not true. Acne can develop at any age.
Hormonal changes often result in increased production of sebum (oil in sebaceous glands), which in turn blocks the glands. This can lead to an infection. Therefore teenagers and pregnant women often experience outbreaks of acne. Girls and women often experience acne before the menstrual cycle.
Oily skin, stress, and hormonal imbalance are some of the important causes of acne. Genetics also plays an important role in this.
A general play of hormones makes this happen at a rapid pace. While you might perceive chocolate to be associated with pimples, it's actually a mesh of imbalanced hormones and low iron levels that are at play. Girls often experience bad acne breakouts before or during periods. Iron levels go down drastically during menses.
Low iron levels can play havoc in your body. They can make the girls crave for something sweet. Researchers say chocolate triggers feel-good chemicals. Therefore, girls/women may voraciously splurge on chocolates, and blame chocolate for acne. But it is a fact that acne is not triggered by an increased intake of chocolate.
It is your body's response to heat that can give rise to acne.
Sometimes, what is already happening in your body can get aggravated by what you eat, not necessarily get caused by it. An unhealthy diet may alter the way your skin looks and feels.
Different people have different types of skin. It's quite possible that accumulation of grime and pollution, along with the crappy food that you indulge in, cause acne to dot your face. Even those who are endowed with great skin can have acne due to hormonal imbalance.
Cleanliness and Personal Hygiene

If you pierce and squeeze pimples, you'll notice white sebum flowing out from them. By doing this, you're actually inviting acne to make a home in your face. Next time you are sure to get acne erupting from the very place you though it might have left.
You're likely to find white heads and black heads on your face, if you do not handle the condition properly. There are some types of bacteria often found on the skin. They can make the situation worse. Although "acne is caused by inadequate personal hygiene" is also a myth, cleanliness and hygiene play an important role in skin care.
It is true that only cleanliness cannot prevent acne. However, while taking medicines, applying creams, and following a healthy diet, you also need to follow the basic rules of personal hygiene.
There are several methods for tackling acne. Treating acne is a long and tedious process. You may be asked to drink gallons of water when you don't want to. Your health care provider may ask you to incorporate more of fresh fruits, especially citrus and watery fruits, in your diet. You may have to constantly cleanse your face, especially if you have an oily skin.
Despite the medicated creams that you may use, treating acne with natural methods is the only way you can ensure that they do not appear again. Increased physical activity (regular exercise), balanced diet, sound sleep, meditation, quitting smoking, reducing alcohol intake, etc., can help maintain hormonal balance.
Moreover, avoiding excessive use of cosmetics, use of organic and herbal products, etc., can help prevent acne. Use face-washes (and other cosmetics) that suit your skin type. Avoid use of products that contain harsh and harmful chemicals.
Never share your towels with any one else. You should use your own face towel during exercise. Germs easily get transferred from one person to another through towels and clothes. Change the sheets and pillow covers regularly.
Dandruff can cause acne. So taking good care of hair and scalp is important, if you want to get rid of acne, and also if you want to prevent acne.
Remember acne can occur anywhere, at any age. It is the first indication that something is wrong with your diet and daily routine, don't ignore it!
Disclaimer: The information provided in this story is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.