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Teen Acne - Causes and Cures

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Featured Article

Teen Acne - Causes and Cures
(Information provided by Luminesse Medical Spa)

It's Not Your Fault

People of every ethnic background, nationality, size and shape will probably experience acne during their teen years. During puberty, your body starts producing hormones called androgens that contribute to acne. This is a natural part of human development and, consequently, there's nothing to be done about it. Unfortunately, boys are probably going to have more severe breakouts than girls. This reverses when girls are in their 20s, 30s and 40s, when female acne is more common than that of males.

Where it All Begins

An acne breakout starts in the skin's tiny holes, commonly called pores. It takes about two to three weeks before a blemish shows up on the skin's surface.

Deep within each pore is a sebaceous gland that works to produce sebum, an oil that keeps skin soft and moist. As the skin renews itself, old skin cells die and are shed off. Under the best circumstances this happens evenly and gradually, making way for fresh new skin. But some people shed skin unevenly and as a result, dead cells mix with sebum and clump together to form a sticky plug. This plug traps oil and bacteria inside the pore - the beginning of a blemish. During puberty, hormones accelerate oil-producing sebaceous glands into hyperdrive, putting teen skin at particular risk for acne.

In the U.S. alone, more than $1.4 billon is spent on acne medications and treatments each year. In many instances, the money spent yields less than satisfactory results and causes bothersome or dangerous side effects. Most prescription medications, such as antibiotics, require at least three months of continuous treatment before any improvement can be expected. Often, a second, third or fourth cycle of therapy is needed.

 

New Treatment Options

Blue Light Therapy

There is a new treatment available that doesn't depend on medication. It's called the BLU-U Blue Light Photodynamic Therapy. BLU-U is a very special blue light that can kill the p.acnes bacteria in your skin that causes acne. Treatments are simple - you simply sit with your face close to the light for a short time each treatment session. Treatments are usually scheduled every week for a six week period.

For more severe acne a facial protocol using Salicylic Acid, Vibradermabrasion and extractions can be an effective adjunct to the BLU-U program. For faster results patients can also use a photosensitizing solution called Levulan to enhance the effectiveness of the Blue Light. The Levulan attaches itself to overactive oil glands as well as bacteria to help diminish oil glands, shrink pore size and kill the acne causing bacteria. After several weeks of treatments, this type of protocol can control and clear acne.

Once acne is under control, an effective skin care regime at home can keep it at bay. A medical grade skin care line such as Luminesse RX should be used as the active ingredients are higher and more pristine and they contain no bacteria or preservatives that over the counter remedies can have. Often patients return to the spa for maintenance treatments every few months to exfoliate and deep cleanse the skin.

If acne scarring occurs there is an excellent laser resurfacing treatment available called Fraxel II. This fractionally ablative laser has minimal downtime and completely resurfaces the skin bringing softer, smoother and fresher skin to the surface. Fraxel II is one of the only treatments to correct acne scarring.

Disclaimer: The above information is presented for educational purposes only. Statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. Products mentioned are not intended or effective for the treatment or prevention of any disease. Consult your physician for all your health needs.

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