Acne is a very common skin problem which affects young people at their puberty and few adults till they reach 45. Acne are referred as Youvana pitikas (which means the eruptions of youth) in ayurveda. This shows the prevalence of acne from ages. Ayurveda has described the causes of acne and recommends the best natural herbal acne remedies too.
What causes acne?
A large number of oil producing glands called “sebaceous glands” are present under the skin on face, back, chest and shoulders. During puberty or menopause due to the influence of the sex hormones, which are produced in male and female, these glands become more active and produce an oily secretion called “sebum”. The sebum makes the skin more oily .The excessive sebum clogs the skin pore or the pit of the hair follicle forming acne.The blocked pore or acne acts as an excellent habitat for bacteria. The bacterial infection causes inflammation (red, painful swelling of the infected area) of the clogged pore or hair follicle leading to eruption of pimples.
Vata and Kapha are two main doshas, which are involved in eruption of acne and pimples. Rakta dhatu or blood also plays an important role in formation of acne.
Vata when gets vitiated due to unhealthy diet and lifestyles affects other two doshas (kapha and pitta) to aggravate them. Aggravated pitta affects rakta dhatu or blood. The vitiated blood affects the skin and causes excess secretion of oil from sebaceous glands. Kapha has sticky property. The aggravated kapha imparts the stickiness to the oil produced by sebaceous glands of skin. Thus the thick sebaceous plugs are formed in skin pores and hair follicles leading to eruption of acne.
Acne worsens when
1. grease, dirt or other harsh chemicals accumulate on skin.
2. you have Increased stress levels.
3. you indulge in Squeezing or pinching of acne.
4. when there are hormonal imbalances during menstrual cycle, menopause and puberty.
5. you are under medications like steroids or hormonal therapy.
Precautions to be taken to avoid exaggeration of acne eruptions:
• Avoid foods which are spicy, dry and oily. These may cause indigestion and lead to vitiation of vata.
• Keep a habit of emptying bowels regularly this always normalizes vata.
• Avoid fast foods and soft drinks.
• Wash your face twice daily with mild cleanser.
• Put a hair band to avoid falling of hair on face. The sweat and dirt accumulated on hair may fall on facial skin through hair strands
• Avoid application of scrubs.
• Wash your hair regularly with mild shampoo to keep it clean and avoid dandruff.
• Squeezing and pricking of pimples cause scaring. Hence avoid this
• Avoid exposure of skin to severe climatic conditions.
• Avoid oil based moisturizers. Water based moisturizers are always beneficial.
• Drink plenty of water.
• Practice a regular exercise regimen
Natural Herbal acne Home remedies :
• Wash your face with lukewarm water and mild soap twice a day.
• Wash fresh methi leaves (fenu greek leaves) and grind it to make a paste. Apply it on face and wash it off with lukewarm water after 10 minutes.
• Grind juicy tender neem leaves with turmeric to a consistency of paste. Apply this paste on acne and pimples. Wash this off after it dries.
• Apply a face pack of ripe tomato pulp and wash it off as soon as it dries naturally (preferably after 45 minutes) .
• Do not keep the make up while sleeping. Cleanse it with a mild herbal cleanser.
• Mix besan flour (gram flour) with rose water and apply a face pack.
• Consuming fresh vegetable salads and fresh fruits keeps the skin healthy and resistant to blemishes.
• Drink plenty of water (15 glasses a day)
Dr.SavithaSuri has been an Ayurvedic Practitioner since 1989. After getting a graduation degree in ayurveda (Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery) in 1988 from University of Mysore, India, she started practising ayurveda . Her articles about ayurveda have been published in news papers and websites. She is a regular health columnist to an international magzine “Joyful Living” Read more about acne care at www.ayurhelp.com/acne_pimples.htm