Our skin, yours and mine, are endowed with oil glands that produce oil that normally lubricates our skins. When the oil ducts become blocked, due to the overproduction of oil, different types of small swellings and bumps appear on the surface of the skin in the form of blackheads and whiteheads which are also known as open and closed comedons, pimples, or cysts. The sum total of these unsightly afflictions is the dreaded acne.
Areas of our skin which have the largest population of oil glands have the greatest tendency to erupt with acne and those are the face, chest, shoulders and back. Just to give you a rough idea, the estimated count of oil glands in our foreheads alone is 2,000 per square inch.
Acne is most often seen in teenagers and on through their 20s, but they certainly do not hold a monopoly on such conditions because younger kids and older adults can have acne as well. Dermatological studies and statistical research have shown that:
- Nearly 80% of teenage boys and girls have acne and since it is so common, it has come to be accepted as a normal part of puberty.
- On the average, acne last approximately three to four years for most of those who are affected. However, in 15% of the cases, acne can persist for as long as eight to twelve years.
- In around 5% of those afflicted with acne, the condition will persist beyond age 25 and up to age 40.
- Some cases of acne, particularly in women, may not start until they are 25 years old.
- 70% of young women will experience flare-ups of acne before their menstrual period and that is believed to be brought about by a rise in their androgen (male hormone) levels.
- Due to the fact that male hormones often promote the development of acne, the most severe cases of these conditions are found in men.
- Women who have unusually hairy bodies and faces as well as abnormal and irregular periods are also at intensified risks of acne outbreaks. They should be medically evaluated for hormone levels.
For the most part and particularly when it comes to fighting acne, I am very big on home remedies and I would like to share some of them with you. Before I do, however, I would like to suggest that you supplement them with an increased water intake, regular exercise, plenty of fresh air and good nutrition which includes at least five servings of fresh fruit and vegetables:
- Applying toothpaste, not jell, to your acne affected areas overnight will reduce the swellings.
- To wash away access oil and avoid aggravating inflamed acne, wash your face twice a day with warm salt water.
- Massage your skin with the skin of a washed lemon before rinsing with lukewarm water.
- To speed up the healing of acne, apply pure Aloe Vera juice twice a day.
- Grind orange peel with some water to form a paste and applying on your acne affected areas. This one, by the way, happens to be my personal favorite.
- And do you want your pimples to disappear like pure magic? Grind some nutmeg with milk and apply on your affected area.