Primary causes of acne

Primary causes of acne

Hormonal acne, also known as ‘acne’ or ‘acne vulgaris’ is one of the most common skin concerns worldwide. This skin condition varies from small comedones and pimples to severe inflammatory lesions. For most people acne manifests for the first time during puberty. Eighty-five percent of people, aged between 12 and 24, suffer from acne1. Usually, it disappears spontaneously around the age of 25. Nevertheless, the condition can be persistent and some people still suffer from the condition in adulthood. In this blog we will elaborate on the primary causes of acne.



THE FOUR PRIMARY FACTORS


Acne is a multifactorial disease and is influenced by 4 primary factors:

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1. Increased sebum production

Sebum is an oily substance secreted by the sebaceous glands in our skin and protects the skin against dehydration and external factors. An increased production of this fatty substance can cause a pore blockage, resulting in microcomedones or small pimples. Hormones play a role in the development of acne as they regulate the production of sebum. Increased hormonal activity (mainly male hormones / androgens) can therefore lead to increased sebum production. Your hormone levels may alter during certain phases of your life (for example: menstrual cycle, puberty, pregnancy, illness) and as a result you may experience more acne breakouts at certain moments.

2. Hyperkeratinisation

Hyperkeratinisation is a second important element in the development of acne. Let's explain this process of ‘hyperkeratinisation’ briefly: Our skin renews itself every 28 days. During this renewal process, new skin cells migrate from the bottom to the surface of the skin. The skin cells undergo a change in shape and composition during their migration to the surface of the skin. The upper cells are called ‘corneocytes' and consist of old, dead skin cells that flake off the skin. In this way, new cells can migrate to the surface. So, new cells are constantly being created and old cells are constantly flaking off. With hyperkeratinisation, there is an insufficient exfoliation (shedding of) of the dead skin cells. The corneocytes stick to the skin's surface and there is an accumulation of these old skin cells. The combination of hyperkeratinisation and increased sebum production results in the blockage of the pores and the development of primary acne lesions.


3. P. acnes bacteria

These primary acne lesions, rich in lipids, form an ideal growth medium for the anaerobic Propionibacterium Acnes bacteriaThis bacterium is always present on the skin but can thrive under certain circumstances (ideally an oxygen-poor culture medium such as sebum).

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4. Inflammation

Due to the presence of large numbers of this type of bacterium, your immune system starts to react and the generation of inflammatory mediators initiates the development of inflammatory lesions. Inflammation therefore results in pimples, papules, painful lesions, which, if left untreated, can lead to acne scars.


Questions about acne?


Discover Dr. Barbara Geusens' tips about acne. Don't hesitate to contact us if you have any other questions.



Questions about acne?

Discover Dr. Barbara Geusens' tips about acne. Don't hesitate to contact us if you have any other questions.









Follow our story


Connect with us and follow the hashtag #MyNomige to stay up to date of the latest skin tips and news.






Follow our story


Connect with us and follow the hashtag #MyNomige to stay up to date of the latest skin tips and news.



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