How to Help Your Teenager with Acne

Acne is a condition that teenagers have been dealing with for generations, and while there is no cure for acne, there have been many advancements in how it can be treated, making today’s generation better equipped to deal with the problem.

There are many myths associated with what causes acne. Some believe that diet plays a role, but there is no proven link between eating greasy food or chocolate and the development of acne. Similarly, stress does not cause acne (although it can make it worse).

The reason for the onset of acne for many adolescents is changing hormones. Teenagers develop certain hormones called androgens when they reach puberty. These hormones stimulate the glands in the pores to produce more oils. The excess oils can lead to pores becoming clogged. If a clogged pore becomes infected, a pimple forms. Pimples can come in many forms, but the most common type (and least severe) are blackheads or whiteheads. It is estimated that approximately 85% of all teens develop this form of acne on their face, neck, chest, back, and shoulders.

The most important way to treat acne is to keep your skin clean. Washing your face twice a day with a mild soap and warm water is key, but experts advise against harshly scrubbing the acne-ridden area as that will only irritate the skin and worsen the situation – instead gently blot the area in question.

There are also many effective over-the-counter medications designed to help with this problem. Products that contain benzoyl peroxide have proven to be effective as they reduce oil production and also contain antibacterial properties. Other medications may contain ingredients such as salicylic acid, alpha hydroxyl acid or sulfur,  designed to unclog pores and remove dead skin cells.

If over-the-counter medications prove ineffective a dermatologist can help. A dermatologist can prescribe stronger acne medications and offer a variety of treatment options.

Jamaica Hospital offers dermatology services in its Ambulatory Care Center. For more information, or to schedule an appointment, please call 718-206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Dark Circles Under the Eyes

Having dark circles under your eyes is not uncommon but they can be frustrating for those who have them.  There are many ways adults and children can develop dark circles under their eyes.

Some of the more common factors that contribute to dark circles are lack of sleep or too much sleep, an iron deficiency, stress, allergies or nasal congestion.

Dark circles under the eyes caused by the more common factors can often be resolved by using over the counter remedies.

If you are getting adequate sleep, have a healthy diet, take vitamin supplements and dark circles still persist, you may have a condition called hyperpigmentation.

Hyperpigmentation is caused by an excessive amount of melanin in your system causing dark patches to develop on the skin.  These patches often form under the eyes.

Some additional causes of hyperpigmentation are:

  • Excessive sun exposure
  • Scarring
  • Genetics
  • Aging
  • Acne
  • Burns
  • Skin pigmentation abnormalities (Thin skin under the eye showing veins)

Since hyperpigmentation does not fade on its own and in some cases can be permanent, you may want to seek the advice of a dermatologist.

To schedule an appointment with a dermatologist at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, call 718-206-6742.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Adult Acne

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, some adults continue to get acne well into their 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s.  There is even a possibility that you can get acne for the first time as an adult.

As an adult, acne can be frustrating because the remedies you used as a teen are rendered useless or can even make your acne worse.  But, how do we determine whether the marks on our skin are acne or merely a blemish?

Blemishes, or pimples, can show up on your face, neck, chest, back and shoulders because these areas have the greatest number of oil glands.  The marks come and go with little or no treatment.  Acne, on the other hand, has a long term affect, requires treatment and if left untreated, may leave dark spots and permanent scars on the skin.

Women who are menopausal are more likely, than men of a similar age, to get what dermatologists call “adult-onset acne.”

Some other reasons for developing adult acne are:

  • Stress
  • Family history
  • Excessive use of hair and skin care products
  • Medication side effects
  • Undiagnosed medical conditions
  • Excessive consumption of carbohydrates
  • Excessive consumption of  dairy

There are many do it yourself remedies, but if nothing clears your adult acne, you should see a dermatologist.  With proper treatment and a great deal of patience, it can be controlled.

If you would like to have a consultation with a dermatologist, you can call the Jamaica Hospital Medical Center’s Ambulatory Care Center at 718-206-7001 for an appointment.

 

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.