Why acne occurs and just who gets acne …
We all know that acne is a condition in which your skin pores become clogged as a result of excess dead skin cells and over production of sebum, (a natural skin oil), which has been unable to exit the follicle normally.
This leads to bacterial growth, rupture of the follicle wall and other circumstances that promote acne.
Hormones called androgens are thought to be the major cause of the increase in sebum production.
Since hormone levels increase dramatically during our teenage years, it’s not surprising that acne occurs most prominently during this period.
Acne typically develops in girls around age 11 and in boys age 13, reflecting the average age at which the male and female genders begin puberty.
Once acne develops the incidence and severity is greater for males.
Boys produce considerably more androgen hormones than females and so they tend to develop more (and more severe) acne.
Around 40% of teenage acne is severe enough to warrant treatment by a dermatologist.
However, the gender scales tip on who gets acne later in life.
Young or even mature adults can get acne, women more often than men.
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- Nearly 85% of the population of the U.S. between age 12 and 24 develop some form of acne.
- Males and females tend to suffer about equally during the period, but women have a higher incidence after that time.
- One quarter of young adults have acne on other parts of the body besides the face – most commonly the back and neck areas.
- 40% of acne sufferers seek medical attention because of the severity of their breakouts.
There are studies that suggest that the monthly hormonal cycle of women has an adverse affect on who gets acne.[lists style=”info-circled” color=”#8224e3″]
- Nearly 44% of women between the ages of 20-32 experience pre-menstrual related acne.
- The odds are even higher for women aged 33 and older.
- This is according to one of the largest studies of the menstrual cycle’s effect on acne.
But acne can occur at any age.
When we look at who gets acne, we find acne isn’t just a teenagers disease and it can have many causes.
Babies often get small whiteheads and it can take 3-6 weeks for baby acne to disappear, which it generally does, spontaneously.
Acne can appear in those over 50 and even later in life. Often it is related to the taking of certain drugs, such as lithium, corticosteroids or phenobarbital.
Acne also affects all races. Although more prevalent among Caucasians; All Black races, Hispanics and Asians get acne from time to time.
No matter who gets acne the good news is the treatment is essentially the same for everyone.