Acne occurs when the pores or hair follicles in the skin become clogged. Sebaceous glands in the skin produce oil, however, too much production can make the skin oily. That’s when acne occurs. This chronic inflammatory, skin condition is what causes whiteheads, pimples and dark spots on the skin.
To counter the menace of acne, we invited, Dr. Umer Mushtaq, to talk about acne and scars treatment. He is a leading consultant dermatologist who is a senior registrar at Mayo Hospital, Lahore. He currently practices at Chugtai Medical Centre, Lahore.
Q.1. What is acne?
Well, acne, also known as acne vulgaris is a very common skin issue that affects many. It has many causes. They could be hormonal, physiological. There are also some drugs that cause acne. Acne also has different grades from mild to moderate to severe.
I believe that for intense cystic acne of the moderate to severe category, prompt treatment is required. Severe acne can leave marks and melasma which can get difficult to treat.
Q.2. What are the symptoms of severe acne?
Its symptoms can be seen in the form of huge, pus-filled pimples. Many people advise leaving the pimples alone so that they get better on their own. However, that is bad advice. We have to consult a dermatologist for this acne so that the pimples don’t leave marks.
Q.3. What causes Acne?
The most common cause of Acne, mostly seen in females, is a hormonal imbalance. PCOS, or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Both gynaecologists and dermatologists receive a lot of patients with PCOS these days. Symptoms of PCOS include weight gain, hairfall, male-pattern hair growth on the face and acne.
So, for patients with PCOS, one should get treated for both the underlying issues and the cystic acne.
Other causes of acne can include excessive steroids, genetically inherited oily skin and some drugs or medications.
Q.4. What is the best treatment of acne?
Regarding the treatment of acne, first, we have to categorize if the acne is mild, moderate or severe. The FDA guideline for acne treatment is six months of oral treatment and one year of topical treatment. Get a proper long-term treatment plan for acne so that recurrent of acne doesn’t occur.
For scarring, Alhamdullilah, we have really great treatment options, such as micro-needling, PRP (platelet-rich plasma therapy) and facials. With these treatments, within 4 to 6 months, acne scarring will be completely healed.
Q.5. Are home remedies or self-treatments for acne-safe?
Well, I would definitely advise against home remedies. Avoid self-medication by buying over-the-counter medicines. A pharmacist can’t diagnose your condition. Always consult a dermatologist before buying any medication and drugs.
You can watch the full interview to know more acne and scars treatment. For any skin-related concerns, consult a dermatologist.