Acne is a very common condition that many of us have experienced at a certain period of our lives, especially in the teenage years. This is caused by the over production of the sebum (oil) in the deep layer of the skin. This can be aggravated by certain high carbohydrate low fiber diets. Certain foods like; caffeine and chocolate can increase it. Stress is also an aggravating factor.
Bacteria called P. acnes grows in the plugged follicles causing the acne. If the hair follicle is blocked this leads to a formation of a whitehead, however if it is open this will cause reaction with the oxygen in the atmosphere leading to blackish dirty color what is known as blackhead. There are many approved treatments for acne including topical cleansers, topical antibiotics, oral antibiotics, comedolytics such as Retin-A, Estringents and exfolliants:
- Photo Dynamic Therapy; this includes the painting of a solution known as Levulenic acid (ALA) then after an incubation period where the acid remains on the skin then the skin is exposed to the LED Blue Light. There will be a reaction on the skin that will subside within a period of a week leading to death of most of the bacteria.
- Microdermabrasion with or without vitamin C (Ascorbic acid)
- A new method is the use of the high intensity Blue Light which causes the death of the acne bacteria.