The Cosmetic Enhancement Center’s Acne Management Team of physicians and medical aestheticians can do more than a regular dermatologist. They will determine the level of your acne and put together a personalized treatment plan to get your acne under control. Your active participation in your treatment plan is the key to success in the fight against acne and our Acne Management Team is committed to working with you to help you look and feel your best.
Acne Effects up to 80% of teens and about 10% of adults. Whether it’s an occasional pimple or a daily struggle with break outs, the battle against acne can seem never ending.
Three primary factors contribute to the formation of acne.
- Irregular shedding of dead skin cells causing irritation and blockage of hair follicles.
- Overproduction of oil (sebum) causing irritation of hair follicles.
- Buildup of normally recurring bacteria on the skin
Acne occurs when the hair follicle becomes plugged with oil (sebum), dead skin cells and bacteria. Each follicle is connected to a Sebaceous gland which secretes oil to lubricate the hair and skin. Normally, oil is excreted onto the surface of the skin however with acne prone skin an excessive amount of oil, dead skin cells and bacteria build up forming a plug in the follicle. This plug leads to whiteheads and blackheads. Red raised spots develop when the hair follicles become inflamed, infected or traumatized by picking. Inflammation that develops deep inside the hair follicle results in cysts. Severe acne can cause residual scars due to damaged skin.
It is unknown what causes the increased production of oil, but heredity and hormones play a role. Acne is not caused by dietary factors or lack of hygiene. In fact scrubbing the skin or cleansing with harsh soaps irritates the skin worsening acne.
There are 3 levels of acne:
Mild acne the result of bacterial infection close to the surface of the skin and result in whiteheads and/or blackheads.
Moderate acne is the result of bacterial infection deeper in the pore. This results in papules or pustules, more commonly known as pimples or zits.
Severe acne occurs when the infection is very deep in the pore and results in Nodules and Cysts. Nodules are hard, painful bumps under the skins surface and left untreated they can flare up repeatedly. Cysts are similar to nodules, but they are generally larger lesions filled with pus and just like nodules can be painful as well as cause scarring. Always remember that squeezing a nodule or cyst will not speed up the healing process, it will in fact prolong it and can cause more
Cosmetic Enhancement Center of New England’s Acne Management Team of physicians and medical aestheticians can determine the level of acne upon consultation. They can then offer a number of acne treatment options and customize a treatment plan.
Acne Treatment options include:
- Cleansing products – Gentle cleansing with Medical Grade Skin Care products designed specifically for acne prone skin to remove excess oil and dead skin cells
- Topical Products – Topical products including exfoliating acids and benzoyl peroxide help diminish bacteria and dead skin cells causing irritation and blockage of the hair follicle.
- Retin A (Tretinion) – Retin A is derived from vitamin A. It works by increasing the cell turnover rate, ex foliating the skin and decreasing the build-up of dead cells within the follicle.
- Antibiotics – Antibiotics work by decreasing the bacteria in the hair follicle as well as reducing the inflammatory response. They can be used topically or orally.
- Oral Contraceptives – Birth control pills reduce the amount of testosterone within the body which suppresses the amount of oil produced by the sebaceous glands reducing the blockage of pores.
- Facial Treatments – Facial treatments with our medical aesthetician help keep the pores cleared of excess oil and cellular debris making blemishes less likely to form, improving inflammatory acne.
- Photodynamic Light Therapy – Photodynamic light therapy has been shown to improve mild to moderate acne. The application of both blue and red light has been shown to reduce bacteria and inflammation to the follicle.
- Nutritional Evaluation– Nutrition plays an important role in the control of acne. Although no foods cause acne, certain foods may cause acne flares. Evaluation with an expert in nutrition may assist with acne control.
Ask about scheduling with our Naturopathic Nutritional Expert, Dr. Masina Wright.
- Acne Scars- Acne scars can be treated with multiple medical modalities including Co2 fractionated resurfacing laser (Total F X) or radio frequency sublative rejuvenation (eMatrix).
- Spironolactone – As an adjunct to hormonal acne, a testostertone blocker has been effective. Click here for more information about Spironolactone Therapy.
Although most cases of acne clear up without any lasting effects, some people are left with scarring and pitting. The more severe the acne the more likely that scarring will occur. Inflammation is the greatest cause of acne scarring. Popping or picking at pimples is also a sure way to increase the chances of scarring. The best way to PREVENT acne scarring is to treat acne as soon as it appears and to keep future flare ups to a minimum with an acne management program. Some patients may also consider microdermabrasion.
Just like other types of scars, acne scarring is the result of a wound on or in the skin healing which causes too much collagen to form in that area. The wound from the acne happens under the skin, so that is also where the scars form. Unlike other scars that form on the surface of the skin, acne scarring can be more difficult to treat because they form under the skin.
For those who do suffer from acne scarring, the Cosmetic Enhancement Center of New England has several different types of treatments and procedures to help. The right treatment plan for your particular needs can be determined by our physicians and medical aesthetician.
The latest addition to our acne scarring treatment options is the eMatrix System with the Sublative Rejuvenation™ Treatment. The eMatrix uses bi-polar radio frequency energy to generate deep dermal impact which leads to the appearance of smoother skin.
The eMatrix is FDA approved, safe, effective for all skin types and has minimal down time.
Other treatment options include:
- Total FX Co2 Fractionated Laser
- V-Beam laser
Before acne scarring can be treated, active acne needs to be brought under control. Call us today and see how our Acne Management Team can help you get back on the road to healthy skin!