Monday, March 30, 2009

Acne Early Signs That Shouldn't Be Ignored

Diagnosing and curing complicated cases of chronic acne condition is very difficult. In such a scenario, it makes sense to keep an eye for acne early signs to ensure that the problem is taken care of in its early stages itself. Acne is a disorder of the skin, which has multiple causes; altered hormonal action being the most common among them. However, just because it isn't regarded as a serious disease, early acne development shouldn't be ignored. It can take a serious form, cause permanent scarring on your face and leave it blemished forever.

Development Of Acne Early Signs

Our body has numerous sebaceous glands that are internally connected with a canal-shaped hair follicle. The sebaceous glands continuously excrete a thickish oily substance (sebum). This sebum is excreted on the skin's surface through small openings within the follicle - the skin pore. The follicle is constricted and consists of keratinocytes besides the hair and the sebum. When certain hormones in our body are stimulated beyond the normal limit, excessive sebum is produced. This additional sebum sticks to the keratinocytes and the hair, thereby choking the follicle. This eventually plugs the entire follicle, creating a plugged pore.

Recognizing Early Signs

Formation of plugged skin pores indicates the onset of an acne problem. All acne early signs can be best understood as a multiplication of the problem of the plugged pores. These plugged pores serve as a host for bacterial infections. As these infections start progressing, the body tries to fight them with its automated mechanism of infusing the infected spot with white blood cells (WBCs).

At this stage, the plugged pore develops a typical reddish hue to it, called inflammation and can be easily detected. Every time the skin membrane surrounding the plugged pore is consumed by WBCs, it is ruptured and the bacteria-infested content is spilled on the surrounding skin. This is how acne lesions are formed, which often lead to the development of self-propagating pimples.

Understanding Acne Lesions

Acne lesions are the early form of an acne problem, which if left untreated can develop into a chronic condition. Such acne early signs are usually found on the face, back, neck, shoulders and the chest. Acne lesions may present themselves in many different forms. The most easily recognizable form of acne lesions is comedones.

Comedones: Universal Signs

A comedone is an enlarged plugged hair follicle. There are basically two types of comedones:

  • Blackheads - These are also called open comedones or first-stage acne. These plugged follicles have a wide opening that has some access to the outside air. Due to this, the melanin in the comedone undergoes a slow but gradual process of oxidation. This gives the follicle its typical black-colored appearance.
  • Whiteheads - These are plugged follicles that tend to remain embedded within the skin surface, gaining very little exposure to air. Thus, they are also called closed comedones. Actually, whiteheads have the same plugged contents that fill-up a blackhead but the extent of oxidation is negligible or absent. As a result, they develop a whitish tinge and hence the name.

Both whiteheads and blackheads are typical acne early signs but can evolve into painful cysts, papules, pustules or nodules, if left untreated. Visit reduce acne for more information.

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