Revealed – The Real Causes of Acne
Acne is a disorder which has been around for ever and is not likely to go away soon, despite the best efforts of teenagers everywhere. The causes behind it are uncertain, but researchers have shown that it is a result of several different factors in combination.
The first factor is the hormone androgen. Androgen is a male sex hormones which causes the sebaceous glands to increase in size and increase their production of sebum. During Puberty both males and females can expect their androgen levels to escalate notably, which is one reason that acne is so prominent amongst teenagers.
Another factor which has a major contribution towards the development of acne is genetics. It seems clear that there is a strong link between the presence of acne in a child and whether or not their parents suffered from acne.
In women the stage of the menstrual cycle can have a dramatic effect on the severity of acne. Between two days and a week before their menstrual period begins women go through a rapid change in their hormone levels. Clearly the hormone levels are important as other factors which attempt to modify or manipulate hormone balance tend to have similar effects on acne. Stopping taking birth control medication is one example of this, and the ultimate hormone mixer – pregnancy – is another.
One thing that has always been suspected of casing acne is stress. Where there is severe or prolonged emotional stress or tension acne is likely to be more severe. This can have a circular effect, particularly in teenagers. The teenagers is under stress, usually about a social situation. Their acne gets worse, which makes the social situation more difficult, which makes the stress worse. It is very hard for some teenagers to break out of this downward spiral.
There are certain medications which are also known to cause acne. Androgens have already been mentioned, but these are sometimes used medicinally and have an obvious effect on acne. Other drugs which have been noted to affect acne include barbiturates and lithium. Certain make ups have been shown to increase the likelihood of acne, in particular greasy cosmetics which may altar the cell structure of follicles.
Some minor environmental irritants can increase the severity of acne. These include polluted air and high humidity. Air pollution is a major factor that can affect overall health, so the effect it has on acne is not likely to be direct, but the result of an overall decrease in health.